This piece was selected to be part of Hello, Neighbour, a community engagement project that takes six pieces of writing from residents of Toronto, and uses them as inspiration for six new works by local artists.
Join us Saturday Feb. 23rd, 2019 2-5pm for a day of performances by the artists, hosted by Nana aba Duncan of CBC’s Fresh Air.
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EXCEPT THE FOX by Hannah Brown
I live on Beech Avenue and I have to leave extra time to walk down to The Fox Theatre on Queen Street at the bottom of the hill. Here’s why: my neighbour Karin is whizzing a wheelchair by at a fast clip with her mother in it and they stop to say hello, and goodbye, and then that old guy René, as always, in his bedroom slippers puts out a hand behind his hip to warn me to stop because a fox is out on early assignment and we wait until its tail disappears—like that— down into the steep bushy slope, and then Faisal says hello, and we talk about the latest challenge to preserving the Balsam Avenue ravine, and then I’m trailing a sweet old hippie who has been smoking a joint on her way to the movies, every time I’ve hurried down the hill since I moved here thirty years ago, only now it’s legal, I think, and there’s the manager of The Fox talking to my postal worker neighbour, Jerry, and all of these, (with the exception of that all-business fox) are lined up in front of me for hot popcorn and say, ‘Hi, Neighbour.’