Family Tree

I am everything my family seeded in me:
intricate things made by hand,
a basement of books and wool, a well
two-hundred years old under the windmill.

My name is war stories and mourning clothes,
prairie dust and lace. Rumble of bass
plucked as I sleep. I am sorrow and now
I am also fruit bearer.

When I graft myself to you I become
fiddle music, practical jokes, stockpiles
of pennies, shelves of nails and screws.
You, too, are thin in seasons of grief and yet

exceed root and stem. Together
we are juneberry bough blooming
and ripening throughout the redolent house.

~ Julie Robinson

Julie C. Robinson is an Edmonton poet, wife and mother. Inspiration for her poetry comes mostly from pondering what it means to be human. Among her poetic influences are Gwendolyn Macewen and Irving Layton and many contemporary Edmonton poets. She has published in Descant, Other Voices, Contemporary Verse II, and Eyeing the Magpie.

Read more poems by Julie Robinson here

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