I take my spot at the edge of the belvedere.
Hallelujah in the ipod, live at london, of course.
I pop open a can of perrier and look at the distance as the music takes over me.
There is no end to the love I feel for this city.
I simply stand in awe of it. The canyon of Peel ahead of me, the flags of McGill and then at Leonard himself , standing tall on that building.
I salute him, one Montreal writer to another, then praise yhwh for such a moment worth living for.
I look at Concordia next to the mural, hall bulding right in front of me and I feel it: The underdog frenchie from the east end just penned his 10th book in seven years.
I watch to the west, where the green of trees mark the beggining of the south-west.
Beyond downtown, down from the hill. Two books about that place.
I look at the river below it.
Sip of perrier.
I look to the east. Theres a tall new building there with an edge of the colour red.
It stands at the corner of Saint-Laurent and Maisonneuve.
My playground for almost 20 years. Too many pages to keep count.
I look the the river beyond it, those islands in front of hochelaga and I think of every place I love that I can’t see from here.
“It’s a very lonely hallelujah!” leonard sings. It hits me to the heart..
I take a sip and give a moment of thought for someone in particular then look at the city again. The wind is good and the sun began its descent on the other side of Mont-Royal.
Can is near empty. Song goes to its final stretch.
I look at Leonard again and thank him.
The city, the trees, the people. I look at dorm rooms and write the life of a student there. I look at the south west and see Sean Cullens’ next move.
I look at centre-sud and see Balkon fucking around the way he does.
I am this city, I live this city, I write this city tenth book about it and I am only getting started.
The song ends to applause.
I tank the perrier.
Tourists left and right, smiling and taking selfies and I stand alone in a crowd living my seven minutes of bliss.
Time for your final thanks, so thank you Montreal.
Grab my bag and one last glance. Then simply walk away.
Leonard will still be there for the next one.