The Repealer’s Soliloquy

“CONFEDERATION WAS IMPOSED upon Nova Scotia in 1867 over the opposition of significant groups of people within the province. There were many reasons for their opposition to union, and a great deal has been written concerning the nature of the struggle and the ultimate success of the Confederates. That Nova Scotia’s response to Confederation was highly emotional has not gone unnoticed.”

Repeal or no Repeal? that is the question;
Whether ’tis best for us to live in quiet,
As we arc now, a tail end of the great confederation,
Or to take arms against this unjust union,
And by our voting end it? To go -secede –
That’s all I And with one voice, united at the poll,
End all this doubt of what is our intention.

Tis a consummation devoutly to be wished,
To be- but free once more; perchance a union maritime,
Aye, there’s the rub; for, were we free what good might come,
When we have shuffled off this Tupper yoke,
Must make us hopeful. There’s the tariff
That makes calamity of our trade,
for who would bear the tax on flour, the high price paid.
Paid for. sugar, tea, and soap; the grinding down
Of the poor man to build monopolies
And fatten the few rich who own the factories.
When we could cure all this with reciprocity?

Who would taxation bear, only exist, not live,
And grovel on in sloth, still sinking deeper in it,
Day by day? But the dread of being naturalized,
And loosing our birthright makes us halt,
And would emigrate to the far west,
From whose borders few travellers e’er return.
And so we hesitate, and sickly sentiment
Makes cowards of us all: So let not now
Our true, firm resolution be led astray
By the pale cast of thought the coming fight may offer.
Great agitation. Soft you, now?
He comes, – Lord High Commissioner
Tupper – Arch traitor, – In thy presence
May our woes be all remembered, and our hearts
Steeled with the thoughts of cursed ’67.

The Daily Acadian Recorder, February 3, 1867

Muise, D.A. “Some Nova Scotian Poets of Confederation” Dalhousie Review, Volume 50, Number 1, 1970 https://dalspace.library.dal.ca/bitstream/handle/10222/59368/dalrev_vol50_iss1_pp71_82.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y