Spring 2024 - Vancouver, I Love You


When I started the job at the homeless shelter, my co-workers educated me about our clients:

    They are dangerous. Your job is to protect yourself. Don’t tell them anything personal – they’ll use it against you.

    They are uncivilized. Your job is to be professional and calm at all times and never show weakness.

    They lie and steal. Your job is not to let them get away with anything.

    They are like children. Your job is to give them an educational experience.

    They are tired and hurting. Your job is to let them rest.

    And: Your job is to remember that you may be the only person to have been kind to them in a long time.

    I liked the last part right away.  But there are nuances to kindness …


Tanya Tomasch is a Canadian writer, musician, and translator who grew up in Austria and Czechia and now lives in Vancouver. Her work is also appearing in issues 8 and 9 of Thimbleberry.

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