Memories Afire

He brings the stack of letters to his nose. The words stink of gun oil, sweat and loss. For the third time, he lets his eyes linger over the emptiness overflowing her side of their closet. There is little of her left… only dry letters, confused memories, and a twisted hanger next to his service uniform.

“We’re ready for you,” his sister says from the door. “Rid your mind of rancid thoughts. True cleansing must start deep within.” She walks to where he stands, and touches his face—gun oil, sweat and loss are overtaken by frankincense, patchouli, and a smile. “You’ll be whole again.”

He watches the joy in her eyes reach for the sorrow in his heart, and he wonders if sisterly love can really be that strong or that blind. Can’t she see his dead bones under nearly decayed flesh?

They walk hand in hand towards the open door. And like with the womb, his sister steps out first. She guides him into a circle of women dressed in crimson and veiled in black, chanting around the dancing flames of a bonfire. Without speaking, she kisses his cheek before joining the chant.

He doesn’t know if he believes in magic, but his sister does. “And I believe in her,” he whispers, throwing the letters, one by one, into the fire. As his ex-wife’s words are unwritten into ashes, he visualizes unwanted feelings fading away with the smoke, and feels his bones breathe anew.

memories afire
consume tales lost to winter
and rebirth a heart

inspired by “Fear”,
winner of the tenth Expanding Bits of Fiction and Poetry into Haibun
and linked to dVerse (Open Link Night)

a wee note: the eleventh Expanding Bits of Fiction and Poetry into Haibun won’t be posted until the first week of May, after the conclusion of Dark Poetry for the Cruellest Month, 2016.

Enfuego, by Timothy Richard Lavelle“Enfuego”, by Timothy Richard Lavelle

Elemental, She

Yesterday, I woke up with the classic elements on my mind. They followed me home from a dream. It wasn’t a very rational dream… Then again, any dream worth having possesses a bit of surreality and a whole lot of magical realism. In my dream, I sat on a cloud delighting in ginger tea and Dominican cake, my feet dangling from the edge.

I stayed there from dawn to dusk and again… watching a wild-haired woman go about her day. When the sun was out, she mostly gardened. When the sun slept for the night, she was all woman, sometimes rather loudly *cough*… other times, quietly dancing under the rain of my home cloud. The following poem was born from the thoughts that lingered… after I woke up:

“Elemental, She”

Her night is made of fire and teeth,
of wild thrusting of the hips,
of warm nibbles on her lover’s bits.

For finger-kissing the dirt,
she saves the whole of her day—
planting seeds, cuttings, and roots…
reaping fruits for thought
and guts.

On rainy days
(and dark moon nights),
she dresses in cooling cloud kisses
and the warmest of the wind’s

linked to the Imaginary Garden with Real Toads (Tuesday Platform)

Das Leben Ist Kurz (Life is Brief), by Patricia Ariel“Das Leben Ist Kurz (Life is Brief)”, by Patricia Ariel