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  • Emerald, and: Overwinter, and: Water and OreFrom “Charms for Ash”
  • Anna Lena Phillips Bell (bio)

EMERALD from “Charms for Ash”

Deepening leaf-green: spring sun climbing summerald,Causing sugars, calling out sugars, strengthening,Pulling water, sipped from soil, up-and-overald,Deepening leaf-green.

Seepen, sapwood, goldentire, emergenerald,Groundwatern, leavy, windition, growind, treen,Brighternally, spressively, nutrientire, goldenerald.

Shimmer, shake, outshine, new stems extenerald;Rain from crown down bark to roots’ beginning;Opposite, live, inevitable—attenerald—Deepening leaf-green. [End Page 140]

OVERWINTER from “Charms for Ash”

Still over winter, well within themselves,Slowed to standing; upstanding, howeverwinter—Soon to summerald, soon to photosynthemselves;Still over winter.

Superall, trappear, inter beginstars,Serenating, secreat, resthemselves,Withiness, whost, winternal, o, verwinter.

Hale from coat to core, they weather themselves,Ochre, gold-lined, cream, gray, silverwinter,Silves secrevident, alreathemselves,Still over winter. [End Page 141]

WATER AND ORE from “Charms for Ash”

Water and ore, with light, made law, made vertical,Settling, soaking, ready to draw beforeRoots need ask it. Glacial, gravel, alluvial,Water and ore.

Summerge, ver, autummering, emeral, feral,Anding, overwinterald, matumn, morer;Fore thern, emerwing, breathern, breathem—prer.Fertile, springy, standing as trees stand, filial,Holding them, empossibling, befolial,Trickling, silt and fine grit, constant, here,Water and ore.

These poems, from a project titled “Beleave,” are made for ash trees (Fraxinus spp.), threatened in North America by the emerald ash borer (Agrilus planipennis). Their sources include research describing the emerald ash borer’s biology, and text imagining favorable conditions for ash, processed using a text generator created by Brian Hayes. [End Page 142]

Anna Lena Phillips Bell

Anna Lena Phillips Bell’s projects include A Pocket Book of Forms, a travel-sized guide to poetic forms. Her work is forthcoming in the Southern Review, Southern Poetry Review, and Canary. The recipient of a 2015 North Carolina Arts Council Fellowship in literature, she is editor of Ecotone and teaches at unc Wilmington.



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