“They went down on the train. They were improvising. The city was brutally cold, snow-white and strange, but still, it was something different from what they knew back in Toronto. In the parks, nobody was out. It was just the snow and the wrought iron against the diamond blue sky. Paul and Mary came up with a routine. They'd walk a few blocks, admire the architecture and the people in their romantic overcoats, then they would look, almost in panic from the cold, for another café au lait, the soft warm white bowl by the windows that looked out onto St. Laurent or Ste. Catherine or Mount Royal. Streets they knew only from poetry books they'd read. To think that they were ever young enough to get their information from poems.”The Joyful Child
The Joyful Child is about a father and his
four-year-old son – Paul and Nick –
and the companionship they develop
at home and on the road.
Published by Gaspereau Press
After Paul's breakup with Nick's mother, the two start out together on Toronto's Shaw Street, honing their idea of home. But circumstances take them across the Prairies, down to Montana and then to the outskirts of Detroit. Their experiences point backward, to Paul's own father, a jazz loving Manhattanite who abandoned his family, and then further back to a grandfather, a comic figure in a long lost Polish town. In The Joyful Child adult lives are guided by children, by children's stories, by the experience of travel and abandonment, and by a love of old cars and music. It's a novel that sings sweet, sometimes sad songs; a children's story for adults.