Ashes

Popping oblivion’s cork, she smiles
unaware of later darkness,
stories that she never wants to hear.

Dancing with liquidity her spirit wafts
through elemental games of chance
bellowing sparks to flames.

Ashes to ashes
to ashes to be
anything else but me,
she sings,
anything else but me.

Her defiant ground recedes
to roiling dreams from ancient seas
bruising morning’s body to the floor.

She places her strength
low on the hearth
stacked among shadows ‘tween bottles of self.

She stares at the ceiling
and screams.

Brenda Warren 2016

241

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