Firework | Teen Ink


September 3, 2018
By CatNovelist GOLD, Berkeley, California
CatNovelist GOLD, Berkeley, California
10 articles 1 photo 9 comments

Favorite Quote:
"If you can quit writing, then quit. If you can't quit, you're a writer."

My throat clenched in on itself

like a snake—

and my whole body shook shook

I bit my lip, hugged the thin blanket

to my warm-blooded body,

and I

could                   (I tried.)


look away.           (I tried.)

The people around me, the silent

shapes in the night,

they sat, placid and smooth

the red spread out into the black sky,

and into my bones,

my cheeks rattled

like hollow green cans, like—

the empty multi-colored light

illuminated our tired faces,

awash with patriotism and regret

sorrow for our coal-dust deeds

and what we thought were golden ones—

I wanted so badly for it

to be the Old


Of July,            (Red white blue)

but look at you, look at all of us

and feel the fireworks                 (we

in your fingers.                          cannot

We are all tightly coiled snakes

with red explosions                     look

in our bones.                           away.)

The author's comments:

This poem is both about the Fourth of July, the feelings fireworks give you, and my newfound complicated way of looking at patriotism. Fireworks can be terrifying. So can the current United States. 

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