Letter to America by Emma Trelles

One Poem

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Corazón in Fall

People like my poems better when
They are serious and lament the fading
Vessels in my cornea, the fog of days
How I’ll be the last one left on the deck
At the bottom of one of the great oceans.
They don’t want to read about the cure
And how I will never stop listening
To Robert and his lovely sliced mouth
I don’t care how old I get. Poems are like
Fists or lipstick, why waste them on me
Trudging through the park with my free
Pandora and infectious truths, songs from before the new
Cool kids were born and endless, in the time of disco naps
Delicious chain smoking, the world and its innumerable fires
Then and now and now. A voice bleeds beneath my ribs
Into the rubber-band palms and baby lawns and empty cans
Crammed into the recycling, its triangle logo reminds me of radio
Active garbage buried at the core. We break. We sing the familiar
Because it feels soft and always. The numbers rise like souls
Flying into the hole no one can see, and did I tell you my arms
Carry decades of lockets shaped like metal hearts, corazónes ready
To click open or shut depending on what I can never tell.
There are so many, all that promise and defeat coiled around
My brittle turquoise view.




Emma TrellesEmma Trelles is the author of Tropicalia (University of Notre Dame Press), winner of the Andrés Montoya Poetry Prize and a finalist for Foreword Indies poetry book of the year. She is working on a second book, Courage and the Clock. A CantoMundo fellow and the recipient of an Individual Artist grant from the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs, she teaches at Santa Barbara City College and curates the Mission Poetry Series. For more, visit emmatrelles.com.

Read three poems by Emma Trelles appearing in Terrain.org, including “Florida Poem,” selected for Best American Poetry 2013.



Terrain.org is the world’s first online journal of place, publishing a rich mix of literature, artwork, case studies, and more since 1997.