All Things Burn
Rowan Brown, Michelle Mo
Piece by Rowan Brown. Image titled “Image 2” by Michelle Mo.
The puerile campfire was assembled,
but not lit.
The moon hung over the tree,
that curved over the boy,
who crouched in the blue light with a bottle of Crisco.
each meager stick with vegetable oil,
and his sister
looked inside for a match.
Finding only one,
she ran up the
I called to her brother,
and he ran with me to the garage to sift through
Only after finding topaz and frisbees,
did we come across the dusty box.
Everyone emerged from warm light
into wet grass and gates into parsley.
This is when it starts.
The cold, and the little-match-girl imagery.
But this is not a terrible children’s story.
The boy held the box of sparklers
that we’d found amongst the gemstones,
and his sister,
the hairspray found up baking soda stairs,
and I watched.
I watched the vegetable oil leaves smoke
under our floral-scented flamethrower.
The hairspray flames
became our lousy fire.
epitomized in smoke
billowing into the rush-hour sky.