My Dad is Not a Star by Matthew Walsh


The death of a star begins with the dramatic
collapse of its core. When they have played out
their expanse, realize they’ve done themselves in,
they go red. They very largest stars leave remnants,
black holes. That’s science for you. That’s the way
stars disappear, until there are many and none, red
and blue regenerations, constant living and recreations.
Like the blond mecca of sitcom stars you faded out
into a calm snow, a white dwarf of snow, showed up
in Pictou as an image from a car window. When
the television broke down, Somers had come and gone,
The images had travelled too far to be buried in snow,
fifteen minutes in to the drama of the show. Our Star
Choice receiver was like the ear of the cosmos.
The red embers of your cigarette moved across the night
when you left to clean. Through the psychobabble
of fir trees, that incessant whispering, you rise up
the ladder and down, hair of snow. I see you pacing
like an animal lost in the snow, how you wish to climb
up to that ear and whisper, please go. Oh please let God be burning
the book in his airport of snow. Out in the night your breath
turns crystal, we will miss the end. You see us call you
from the picture window, fix the TV. We have so many needs,
the rabbit ears are tilted at ninety degrees, we are fine
with the old technology, no worries. From our view, you are
dancing and marvellous, making animal circles in snow.



Matthew Walsh is currently studying Creative Writing in UBC’S MFA program. His work has been or will be featured in The Found Poetry Review, Carousel, Descant, Existere, Matrix, Carte Blanche and as part of the Halifax Commons Poetry Anthology. His long poem Cloud Grape won the York University President’s Prize for poetry. He is currently a member of Prism magazine’s editorial board.