Posts Tagged ‘fire’


A fireplace is made for flame.
Even when dark, empty, cold,
its purpose is unchanging.

It was made for flare, for flicker,
for blaze, for light; it was made
to cast warmth, to hold glow.

The soul is a kind of fireplace.
Love itself the flame.

Even in our chillest hour,
it’s clear what we are made for.

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For years, I have run
from this anger.
Tonight I stopped running,
let the anger catch me,
let it burn in me,
a wild conflagration,
it terrified me,
and then I watched it leave.
For the first time in years,
I am not running.
How still it is.
Whatever has turned to ash
was not essential.
What is left is so raw,
so beautiful.

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Even the word surrender
suggests some agency,
but perhaps
what is asked of us
is zero—perhaps
we are like the seed
of the lodgepole pine
that does nothing itself
to open.
It needs the heat
of a wildfire blaze.
The seed is released
into the blackened,
desolate world
that seemed hellbent
on destroying it,
but it is the carbon-rich
soil left behind by the fire
that feeds the seed
and helps the tree
grow straight
and tall.
No surrender.
No effort.
Who could ask
for the fire?
The seed didn’t.
It did nothing at all.

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Again, the heart
is a too-tender thing—
its wild ache spreads
through the tinder
of the chest
until all is ravaged
and all is singed
and red is too red
and raw is too raw
and each feral beat is
a bell clanging run,
but there’s nowhere
to run to,
and love is too
goddamn alive
and each pulse
spills more

it is a long time
before I feel
the stars
reach down
to hold me.

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It was a dream, but I tell you
everything was on fire in the house—
I knew the whole island would burn,
and I had to choose what to take
and I ran past the old records
and thought, I have those songs in me,
and I ran past the books
and thought, I have those stories,
and I ran past the photos
and thought, those memories
are already with me,
so I ran, chased by flames,
toward the ocean
with the only thing
I can really carry, this buoyant love,
and I dove in, hands empty,
able to cup the water
and pull through the tide.
The salt water lifted me,
whispered in waves: letting go
is what keeps you alive


Hi friends, sorry the poem is late! We had no internet last night. Happy almost solstice–I have never been so ready for the light. 
Love, Rosemerry

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Ode to the Bic Lighter

My first lighter I found in a parking lot—
a smooth red plastic tube that fit
in my pocket. I knew playing with fire
was dangerous. I knew I wanted
to learn how. I remember trying again
and again to get the right purchase
with my thumb on the serrated sparkwheel.
I rolled and rolled until my skin was raw,
until at last the brief flame sputtered then died.
It wasn’t long before it came second nature—
the smooth flick needed to produce a spark,
the slight pressure on the red tongue
to maintain steady flame.
I learned how it burns
to be lit up too long,
but once you know how to make light,
how easy it is to bring it with you
everywhere you go.

This poem is published in the wonderful ONE ART Poetry Journal

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I throw in any tallies
I’ve been keeping,
the ones that record
who did what and when.
I throw in all the letters
I wrote in my head but didn’t send.
I throw in tickets I didn’t buy
to places I didn’t visit.
I throw in all those expectations
I had for myself and the world last year
and countless lists of things I thought I should do.
I love watching them ignite,
turn into embers, to ash.
I love the space they leave behind
where anything can happen.

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Beyond Touch

And if a cheek should find a chest,

and if a tongue should graze a lip,

and if a hand should meet a curve,

and if a hip should stir a hip,

then we might know the flesh as kindling,

know the skin as eager spark,

know the lover as the flame

that helps unthaw the frozen dark.

But if a heart should stoke a heart,

and if a soul should fuel a soul,

then we might know the self as unself—

ravaged, ardent, blazing, whole.

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But No Hiding

It is the job

of the wildfire

to crave ignition,

to seek more fuel,

to turn at the whim

of the wind.

The wildfire’s job

is to burn

whatever it meets,

to incite it to flame,

to not care what it chars

how it ashes.

I want to not see it

as it leaps and claims,

want to not smell it

as it fills my lungs,

becomes me,

want to not notice

the part of me

ready to burn.

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Too Close to the Light



Just for a moment

my hair was on fire

and just for a moment

orange flames

rose from me

and just for a moment

I knew what it was

to be candle—

even now I can see it

beside my face,

how before I was afraid

I thought, how beautiful.



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