White egret in pine tree

Three Poems by Emma Trelles

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This Week

I don’t want to forget the walks
after day dissolved the parkway,
how air is an animal draped over skin
in July. We tracked egrets sailing
white over us, in pairs, a half hundred,
until we found them, origami
folded in the needles of slash pines.
Is it like this for everyone? Each nicking
minute, the ritual laments, then without
herald, the familiar, carrying you to clean
fields once more, thankful to be standing
in the heat watching egrets.



Florida Poem

After summer rains,
marble thumb snails and beetles
blot the window screens
with pearl and drone. Gardenias swell,
breathing is aquatic and travel
a long drawl from bed to world.
During drought,
the heat becomes a devil
girl with oven-red lips
who wants your brains puddled
in a brass-capped mason jar,
who wants the silver stripped
from your tongue, the evening pulse
between your legs, yes, she wants
everything from you.



The Living Hour

Caped in sage and chalk moon brooch,

the sky arrives. The offering is wet

grass, a whip stitch of bird song.

How does its nickel pitch thread

April’s blue quartz light?

How does it find hold in the whorl of the ear?

It is not enough to paint a place.

Let me offer my confession, then,

amidst my unseen neighbors, the sly

tarpon cutting tunnels beneath

the inlet, the wild blood of branches.

I am a woman of doubt. I am a woman

running from my youth. I might rest a while

in this little kingdom, not map escape but           


backwards                  liquid                           floating

down to where plain thoughts await.

It is the dream of all worriers,

to silence the dirge that has trailed us since birth.

Look here:                          desk       window                 

the city diminished

rolled back  its carpet of  gears and wailing.




Emma Trelles is the author of Tropicalia (University of Notre Dame Press, 2011), winner of the Andrés Montoya Poetry Prize, and the chapbook Little Spells (GOSS183, 2008). A contributor to the Letras Latinas weblog and to the Best American Poetry blog, she lives with her husband in South Florida, where she teaches and writes about visual art, books, and culture.

Header photo by anne773, courtesy Pixabay.

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