This selection, chosen by Guest Curator Jordi Alonso, is from Shade of Blue Trees by Kelly Cressio-Moeller, released by Two Sylvias Press in 2021.
Dear Penelope, do you now sleep among the catacombs? Scarves of white drift over the Aegean—an altar of bottomless blue. I have gone to the edge of the world and still cannot find you. Even the olive trees raise their spangled limbs skyward in longing. Mother Earth slides her abacus beads, conjures storms quick as curses. When lightning struck, did the boat protect or beckon the bolt? Island flowers shut their eyes only when the stars disrobe—hope and sorrow held within the same root. She imagines him bright-toothed and swarthy, but her husband is just sunburned and homesick. So many suitors holding her skeins—she’s woven a trail for her waylaid mariner, long as his beard and her undoing. In twenty years, she has never asked, What shall I wish for myself? Odysseus wonders, Do I have the right to return? Maids cast offerings to the sea: red rose petals and grape leaves— love and wine all that remain.
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