Wood laid on the hearth and lit,
the bright tomorrows stacked,
the least flame fanned
into a wicked spritely dance.
Hand over hand they sat, barely
woman and newly man, thigh
against thigh like the burning logs
coupled with fantastic longing.
No thought that in the heart’s smithy
the heat of those moments would forge
lifelong demands, the combustible
hour smouldering into years
or that a blazing light, unstoked,
could thin to a dying glow.
This poem first appeared in Ristau: A Journal Of Being, edited by the brilliant Robert L. Penick, in January 2019.