Goodbye to the bad-perm years. The Knock-knock/who am I? years.
My oh-what-a-feeling years.
To my walls plastered with Alex P. Keaton’s smile, saved from the
TV Guide. To the closet door that could almost shut out school-bus
jeers behind me.
Goodbye, corner sofa where my pajamaed body fit snuggly between
my dad’s socked feet and mother’s side. Dad dozing, Flight maga-
zine open across his chest. Mom’s hypnotic hand, raising and low-
ering her needle in time. Peter Mansbridge wishing us all another
Farewell to the lilac hedge that held Trist’s abandoned kittens.
Where we left them bowls of milk-soaked bread. The back step
where each spring’s survivors waited for me to wake.
Goodbye, Skyhawk. Your bird’s-eye view from the Richardson
building to the Braun family farm. Turning lines of elms into
poetry. Your invisible butterflies, your comforting hum. Farewell to decades of a dad strong enough to lift me higher than anyone else’s.
Farewell, giant poplars beside the highway, breathing, You’re almost home
Copyright © Angeline Schellenberg. Originally published in Heartwood: Poems for the Love of Trees (League of Canadian Poets, 2018).
Angeline Schellenberg’s collection Tell Them It Was Mozart (Brick Books, 2016) won the Lansdowne Prize for Poetry, the Eileen McTavish Sykes Award for Best First Book, and the John Hirsch Award for Most Promising Manitoba Writer, and was a finalist for the 2017 ReLit Award for poetry. Her poetry placed second (2016) and third (2014) in Prairie Fire’s contest, and was shortlisted for Arc Poetry Magazine’s 2015 Poem of the Year. Her poems have also appeared in journals including TNQ, Grain, and Lemon Houndand the 2015 Alfred Gustav Press chapbook Roads of Stone. She lives in Winnipeg (Treaty One Territory) with her husband, their two teenagers, and a German shepherd-corgi. Find Angeline on Twitter at @poetic_Angeline.