Jordi Alonso







Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)


You let me claim some space on your bookshelves and let me stay the night. We were blanketed by Arabic and Spanish songs tinged by the crystal bowl of yarrow blossoms floating in water on your nightstand.         When I woke up before you, I meant to wander into the thousand pages of your books; I got lost in you instead. The signs pointing the way around you started out in Spanish and blended into Arabic. I couldn’t do anything but sound out my way back to romance.




Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) 


Sometime after I met her, after she’d decided one gin-filled afternoon what color my heart was––“goldengreen »–– I thought to learn more about her and asked her what color hers was. I texted her; she texted back a heart. “It’s unbreakable,” she said, “lavender and stone.” I buy her favorite gin and order lavender flowers from England in anticipation of the few nights she’s invited me to spend at her apartment alone while her human’s away. Tending to the infusion more carefully than I’ve tended to my health in the last year, we collectively decide it’s ready to drink on my first night at her place. “Don’t strain it,” she says, “we’ll eat the flowers.” When she wakes up the next morning, I’m already dressed and in the living room. “How did you sleep, love?” I ask. “Okay,” her voice is raspy, her eyes slightly heavier than usual, “I’m allergic to lavender.”






for Mara Vulgamore


The potter’s wheel whirrs

while wet hands beat a bowl into shape.


Roughed with diamond grit,

the clay’s soft surface takes on scores


of scratches, sanded down

into a semblance of smoothness.


Fired at fourteen cones,

graphite burns


and hair-thin fissures scar,

filled-in with glaze.


There is violence

in the throwing of ceramics.


Just as bones are battered

shattered bowls are tossed aside.


Like bones, too,

porcelain can set


(and lavender smells sweetest

when it’s bruised.)


Joined shard to shard

by lacquered streams,


gold spiders through

green porcelain.



(published in the Spring 2016 issue of Noble/Gas Qtrly)












Jordi Alonso studied poetry and literary translation graduating with an AB in English from Kenyon College in 2014 and was the first Turner Fellow in Poetry at Stony Brook University where he received his MFA. He is a Gus T. Ridgel Fellow in English at the University of Missouri where he is a PhD candidate. He’s been published or has work forthcoming in Kenyon Review OnlineNoble/Gas QtrlyRoanoke Review, and other journals. Honeyvoiced, his first book, was published by XOXOX Press and his chapbook, The Lovers’ Phrasebook, was published by Red Flag Poetry Press in January of 2017.


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