Montgomery Park is a little green space in the neighbourhood where I grew up, filling in an oddly shaped gap formed by the highway and a storm overflow ditch. It has a small playground, but you’ll rarely see families with little kids there; it’s mostly occupied by teen smokers from the high school across the road. Being within yelling-earshot of my home, Montgomery Park was within the boundaries of where I was allowed to go alone.
Before the City of Kitchener built the giant elevated overpass for highway that now casts shadow across the park, the light that raked across Montgomery Park at dusk was magical; The air would almost glow with everything in it silhouetted. As the street lights along Montgomery Road blinked on, time would suspend. The street lights were a peculiar old kind that cast a focused cone of light directly below themselves, not capable of illuminating much else. There wouldn’t be another soul in sight, and the only sound would be the non-stop hum of cars and trucks. At some times of year, there would be fireflies.
For a moody pre-teen, that was my contemplative space; sitting on a swing, alone at Montgomery Park. Not swinging, but just planting one foot in the gravel/sand and allowing myself to spin slowly around, letting the chains twist and untwist, letting my mind twist and untwist, meditating on life.
This piece is about that time and place.