These signs are on Highway 16...
Their hands kept tied, year after year,
for jobs are just so hard to get
up North, a place buses neglect.
First Nation girls swallow their fears,
hitch a ride, though warnings they hear,
a beast preys on the desperate...
mothers mourn, will never forget
those lost on the Highway of Tears.
*An Italian Octave
About this Poem
*Highway 16 in British Columbia is known as the Highway of Tears. Since 1974, 18 young women or girls have either been murdered or gone missing on the highway (some report the number is wrong and that it is as high as 43.) Communities are far between in this region, the buses are scarce and this route must be traveled to find work. The murders were not given the attention they were due and it has come to light that this is primarily because the women were Aboriginal. The police have since apologized for the handling of their cases. For a picture which captures how serious the danger is please click on the about this poem link. For more information http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50135366n