Background

As a child in grade school in the 1950s, my teachers romanticized this country’s history in stories of explorers like Radisson and Groselliers, heard as radio dramas over the P.A. system. These colourful stories infected my soul. Even in Ms. McKay’s history class at Earl Haig Collegiate, I remember my fascination with an artist’s print over the front blackboard. It was a farmer, seen from behind, driving a horse and plow toward the western horizon over a rolling field, somewhere out there in romantic Canada.

Credits

Writer/composer – Pete Thorne
Baritone Guitar, Classical Guitar – Sean Roberts
Electric Guitar – Alex Paris

Lyrics

When ya face into the wind
As time begins in woods and water
Long before the founding fathers
There were northern native men
May their rivers rise again
May their favoured sons and daughters
Help us all learn how to live and love as true Canadians

When the forest rings with echoings
Beneath the green cathedrals
Where the earth and native people
Lived in harmony and peace
You can understand their yearning and
The dreams they came to follow
When they taught us how with dignity and grace
To love this rivered northern nation place

The wind across the water bends the ancient woodland tree
Now a barren limb leans off and points away
And a maple leaf is turning shades of red high in the tree
As it flutters on the early autumn breeze

When ya face into the wind
On a cold November morning
You can almost just imagine
How it felt away back when
Those French and English men
Who braved the north Atlantic
Came to build a better future as Canadians.

Down into the river through
The lakes and woods and valleys
To be spilled across the plains
And over mountains in the sun
You can understand their yearning and
The dreams they came to follow
As they felt that chinook wind upon their face
In this rocky mountain northern nation place

Chorus:
Cuz when ya finally find a place
That’s like no other
So ya live with heart & soul
From deep within
And ya wave the red and white with pride
When the home team comes back glorified
And brotherhood means love
Through thick and thin
Then ya know ya wanna be Canadian

When ya face into the wind
With the bending grass of summer
So ya lie down where those roots abound
And life begins again
May your rivers never end
May they flow in peace forever
May your shores roll down to welcome in true Canadians

When a somewhere friend is hurting and is calling out for freedom
Like a trembling leaf in winter holding on to life and limb
You can understand their yearning and the dreams so soon to follow
When they come to know the breadth of your embrace
And the touch of northern wind upon their face

Chorus