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Riverside Reverie

Matt Hsu

CAS for Database


San Francisco, California, USA

San Francisco University High School


The stones in my palm, sculling, stamping, skittering

beneath sapphire river foam. You remember, don’t

you: the wicker-baskets that held wine-soaked plums,

the paperbacks bulging their necks inside walnut-wood

boxes, the broken butterflies that blessed our backs with

nectarine kisses. Hailing the sky with bejeweled thumbs

and ankles, we prayed for sweet showers, goldenrod,

bluebells, magpie tears. Picked tangerines from your

palace and smoldered them into burnt glass, uncorked jugs

of olive oil with our molars, drove our noses into the

soil and found faux emeralds beneath the surface. Your

fingers, capped with grass-blade-rings, wriggling behind

a mountain I would never see again. We were adjunct, we

were inevitable, we were intoxicating: we were reverie.


I interpret this poem to be about heaven on earth, about finding divinity in the beautiful things in life. From bejeweled thumbs to olive oil (which are common symbols of divinity!), the author skillfully recreates this ethereal reverie.

Matt Hsu is a high school senior from San Francisco, California. He works as a poetry/prose editor at Cathartic Youth Literary Magazine and Kalopsia Lit. His work has been recognized by the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, and he’s published or forthcoming in Polyphony Lit, Blue Marble Review, ANGLES, and Movable Type. Currently he’s querying his first novel, a thriller-mystery about a crafty assassin. In his spare time, he enjoys playing tennis and eating dark chocolate. You can find him on Twitter at @MattHsu19.



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