The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Shade of Blue Trees by Kelly Cressio-Moeller

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.


A water / unlike any other water ~Joanna Klink

At Point Lobos, a woman mentions she nearly drowned
at Monastery Beach—some days she can still taste brine.

Pleurisy of tissue and wave: kick harder, kick harder.
Grow a third lung, line it with desire. Holdfast. Hold. Fast.

Cormorant deep-dives, belly full of pebbles. Flash your blue
throat to me! Build us a nest, carino, con posidonie e fiori.

Tie the boat in the shallows, hike through dune asters,
a clutch of bees, thick bullwhips beached on black stones.

18th century vaqueros broke mustangs along coastal bluffs, mistook
barking sea lions for wolves. Gray whale cries ghost the cove.

Sway-balanced on driftwood, a great blue heron syncs with my
shipwrecked vertigo, slow motion wingbeats carry her away.

Poseidon chases down the sun. Storm-footed chariot. Whitestarred
Hippocampi. Coffin bones hammer the seafloor gold.

In the Whaler’s Cabin, a man spoke about the sea—
how it took his boy and didn’t give him back.

Giant kelp coppers teal water, long garlands wreathe into laurel
crowns as if all Olympus is surfacing.

Kelly Cressio-Moeller is a poet and visual artist. Her poems have been nominated for Pushcart Prizes, Best New Poets, and Best of the Net, and have appeared widely in journals and at literary websites including Gargoyle, North American Review, Poet Lore, Salamander, THRUSH Poetry Journal, Valparaiso Poetry Review, Water~Stone Review, and ZYZZYVA, among others. An associate editor at Glass Lyre Press, she lives in the Bay Area. Shade of Blue Trees from Two Sylvias Press (Finalist for the Wilder Prize) is her first poetry collection.

Jordi Alonso holds degrees in English literature from Kenyon College (AB ’14) Stony Brook University (MFA ’16) and the University of Missouri (PhD ’21). He is currently a Classical Studies MA student at Columbia University. Honeyvoiced, his first book, was published by XOXOX Press in 2014 and his chapbook, The Lovers’ Phrasebook, was published by Red Flag Poetry Press in 2017. His work appears in Kenyon Review Online, Banyan Review, Levure Littéraire, and other journals. Follow him on Twitter @nymphscholar or get to know his work at


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