Bringing poetry together with transit may seem like a stretch at first. It doesn’t necessarily make sense on the surface, unless the former is being used to describe the latter. That’s exactly what has happened in the case of Metrolinx’s light rail transit (LRT) projects and the work of spoken word artist Wali Shah.
“For me, this was an opportunity to put the pieces together,” Shah said. “It’s to remind the general public that Metrolinx is doing really amazing work for the community and we’re all going to benefit from it.”
Wali’s latest creation comes in the form of ‘A Region United,’ a piece dedicated to connecting communities and the people that live in them.
In the case of the Finch West LRT project, for example, Wali focused on different audiences. Young people attending Humber College will soon be benefitting from the line, along with others who live, work and shop along the corridor. He also lives in Mississauga, so the Hurontario LRT project is close to home for him.
“Who are we? We are the connectors, moving people to opportunity. From professionals to students, just like you and me, we move in unity.”
Those words and others have recently been brought together by Wali in the form of a performance and video.