It doesn’t sound like much of a paean:
F*** the Narrows. F***Amherst Rock, the gull shit, the Castle. F*** Marconi. F*** the charming little hippy-stained row houses in the Battery. F*** the Battery.
Home, in this case, is Newfoundland, and Hynes finds quite a few things worthy of his four-letter kiss-off there—three pages’ worth, in fact, and throughout those three pages, Hynes never once strays from the bilious style set down in those first two lines. The only things that change in his relentless harangue are the targets, whether he’s skewering “the ignoramus theatrics down at City Hall” or “every coulda/woulda/shoulda-been circle-jerkin ex-high school hockey star.”
If Hynes sounds upset, he is. But, as he observes in a post script to the piece, the carefully directed crankiness also reminds him what makes home unique—a “mutinous means of expanding the myth” of Newfoundland. Hynes has a point: “God Help Thee” sounds like the kind of trash-talking rant you share with friends over beers. There's a slow pleasure in these moments, a catharsis in staking your spot in the place you live.