October Grove

Fish, Emma Conlon



Tasmanian bluegums molt,
peeling back from their trunk-bones,
calcifying up from the soil.


To the west, the creek spits and slaps.
Sand on a beach at low tide: that’s how
this bark looks. And decaying
neck-ropes. And the strokes
of Manet’s goldfish, all auburn
and russet, all glaucomic blue.


The trunk bases are black wrinkled satin,
or seeping molasses, or elephants’ outsides.
The bone bases sag with fine paper-white shavings.


Meet me here in five minutes,
somebody has carved in the bluegum bone.


Predictably, bay laurels burst
from the weaknesses of rooted trees,
and do well there. Blackbirds twitch and hop,
clearing the midnight from their throats,
milky resin staining their beaks.


Rain begins to fall. The tree bones creak.
October now is not so warmly colored,
nor hung so much like lace from the morning canopies.


About the Author

Kayla Krut, UC Berkeley

Kayla Krut, a native of San Diego, is in her third year in the comparative literature department at UC Berkeley; her languages are English, Latin, and German, and she is taking a creative writing minor. Her poems have been published by Hanging Loose Press, Soul Fountain, and multiple Border Voices and California Poets in the Schools anthologies. More of her poems, prose, and plays can be found here.

About the Artist

Emma Conlon, American University

Emma Conlon is a sophomore studying graphic design. She hopes one day to own a quaint little cottage in the English countryside, but will settle for a less quaint cottage, if need be.

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