The poems below were chosen as “Best Poems” and excerpted from the two most recent issues of the Aurorean. Potential submitters can get a good feel for the kinds of poetry we publish by reading these poems, and by being familiar with our journal as a whole.



The buckeye
butterfly flits over the field’s
tall grass. His ragged hind-
wing lopsides flight, yet
he still takes air.


A widow spiderling para-
glides from under the eaves.
The silken chute is custom made,
but she must wait to see her
body scarlet an hourglass.


Tell me, how can you
know the thistle’s electric
violet and not want to see it
again tomorrow? The soft-
land of bees year after year?


My son is a glass
on the ledge of his mind’s
making. Each day I tell him
as he falls, know you can—
reassemble the shards.

by Kelly Cressio-Moeller, from Spring/Summer 2018



I might be tempted to say
I would give you the moon
if it weren’t so far away,
if it were mine to give and not the world’s,
if saccharine counted as romance.
Even the Americans (who love sweet things)
don’t go there anymore.

I would give you my self,
if I weren’t perpetually losing it,
if I could say with confidence
I was not handing you an empty box.
If it weren’t so disappointing to
receive such a disingenuous gift.

But perhaps, in giving each other
the impossibly far away, or
what the mouth begs to learn
to speak, knowing full well its impotence,
having awaited only the beautiful box,
the elegant bow, and those big pretty eyes,
we are gifting the only thing we have
to the person who needs it most.

by Joshua Sterlin, from Fall/Winter 2017–2018