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Themes: Contribution and Community - Stories


(Reprinted with permission of the author, Stuart McLean. From "Maple Creek, Saskatchewan" in Welcome Home: Travels in Smalltown Canada. 
Toronto: Penguin Books, 1992.)

Happiness is the colour
of bread dough,
Happiness sounds like the
mixers turning around,
Happiness tastes like puff pastry
like cream horns,
Happiness smells like cookies straight
from the oven,
Happiness looks like bread loaves
ready for the proofer,
Happiness is being free
in the bakery.  

This poem was written by Trevor, a young man with cerebral palsy who can't speak and doesn't walk well, who began at 12 years old to visit the local baker. Trevor watched and the baker let him use the rounding machine. Trevor began showing up at 5 a.m. every Saturday. In the summer, Trevor came in every morning and eventually brought his parents in to show them what he could do. Trevor's teacher wrote out his poem for him so he could give it to the baker. "You know, at the time I never thought anything about having Trevor in the store. But when I read the poem, I realized that he is the highlight of all the years I have been here. He is the most important thing that has ever happened to me."


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