National Poetry Month, Day 24: “Letter to the Right” by Emma Trelles


Letter to the Right

I hope you never read my poems.
I do not care for the sweet wine you serve
warm from the pantry, or the email you sent
about a savior at the supermarket.
Here’s some news: He is not blonde. He is not watching.
When I saw him, he wore glasses and a beard
shaped like a flame. When I heard him,
his voice was a glissando of raw guitars and sorrows.
America, I don’t remember who you belong to.
Even when I’ve smiled and said thanks, I’ve really meant shut up.
It is time to practice your hospital voice.
Somewhere there are silkworms making, and their music is redemption.
Somewhere there is a man with a gun, always a gun.
Near my home, a fence painted with the names of the dead.
Do you hear them between prayers, yours and mine?
I imagine the dead are dreaming of September
with its fading light and useful errands,
the dead assembled in soft robes.
This is the hour when I wanted to sleep
but I thought I would write you instead.

Emma Trelles


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, from GOSS183 press. She is a regular contributor to the Best American Poetry blog.

Original poetry published by The Rumpus. More from this author →