Or so it seemed, as we gathered up yet another gigantic bag of multicolored leaves from the deck. We looked out at the stripped branches, and thought of Shakespeare's phrase: "bare ruined choirs." But working our way through the stack of fallen foliage, we kept thinking of the once well-known song "The Maple Leaf Forever."
It hasn't been sung anywhere for decades, and never caught on in Quebec, where there was some resentment toward the opening lines:
"In days of yore
From Britain's shore
Wolfe, the dauntless hero, came,
And planted firm Britannia's flag
On Canada's fair domain."
Montcalm doesn't even get a mention. And "came" is not a rhyme for "domain."
The last time we heard this sung was at a breakfast for the Moose Jaw Times-Herald's carriers. There were three tables of pre-teens, and we were given a singalong challenge. Our table--earnest little patriots--chose to sing "The Maple Leaf Forever." We were soundly beaten by the table that delivered a raucous "Ham and Eggs."
And let's face it: "Ham and Eggs" is a much better song.
"Ham and Eggs, ham and eggs,
I like mine fried nice and brown,
I like mine fried upside down.
"Ham and eggs, ham and eggs,
Flip 'em, flop 'em, flip 'em, flop 'em,
Ham and eggs!"