To the woman at the sidewalk: This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

July 2, 2014
What does rain look like with hazy white cigarette in one hand
and plastic-wrapped lilies in the other – tilting her eyes back to the pitter patter
of this cement littered with rusted brick dust and yellowed shards that told the
propped elbow on the windowsill how things are set to flame and how evening

and smoke on the rooftop sill spilled ascetic scarlet
that stretched conflagrant wings unfurled over rosy cheeks and
a half empty paper cup she held from coffee shop
to inferno's smithy shop where ghost smog crackled
crumpled the family sepia photo into how a black rose may be folded
flaming record that played all of fire's eruptions in finale's requiem.

The phoenix sets herself to flame in a funeral
but her life comes again rebirthed in ash
while it all fell to silence that speckles the gray pavement with wetness
was she caught herself staring at the rubble – it was the rain that fell into her eyes
not the delayed tears or maybe it was
just that ash tumbling out when rubber sole extinguished cigarette because
“Mama, I Love You” fell to the ground into the silent austere charcoal
with her streaming auburn locks motionless twice a decade ago and

“It's beautiful” comes exhaling after so long: Time was no longer cruel –

She thought the rain was Beautiful.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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