We sit mesmerized As the fire builds, sparks Ever hotter, we lean closer Slide white marshmallow Skewering ourselves Turning tan to gold Then black crisp Goo pressed on graham Cracked earth so brittle Chocolate squares melt Softening to flesh as we Consume ourselves licking Our lips as heat licks us Devouring, rhapsodic As a blood-red sunset
Where There Is Smoke
It probably began somewhere Else with a flash and crack. A spark struck, then smolder. Smell it in the air, nostrils flare, The throat tightens, lungs burn. The scent of pine, fir, larch, And juniper gin up the hearth, But there is only scorched earth, The forest fast becomes torch. Smoke pudding settles heavy in Bowls, hollows, ravines, and rims Mimicking morning mists, veils That will not lift until snow falls. We cannot breathe easy, we hunker Down, anxious, shut up in the house, Worry about the kiln to come, Ash glaze and twilight glow, urgent Evacuation orders. Go! Get out! Now! No time to inventory valuables or sins.
©2022 Bruce Morton
All rights reserved
…splits his time between Montana and Arizona. His poems have appeared in various venues, including, most recently, Muddy River Poetry Review, Sin Fronteras/Writers Without Borders, Wilderness House Review, and Ibbetson Street. He was formerly Dean of Libraries at Montana State University.