haze on mountain sides
trickle of black, paper-thin,
melts at the touch smoke
you can catch as it glides,

twirling down from nothing but
heated glow over treetops–
crackles on the fringe of what
was once green and young.

dusty fingers brushing through
burnt remains to find the promised
gem emerging from fire, the crown
glowing despite grasping flames,

smoldering tears and dead coals,
arid eyeliner, war paint black as
the dog that limps, whimpering
away from the end of home.

black dust seeps under the
notes of charred hymns,
hands frozen together in
prayer for rain that never came.

but when it comes, will I
forget the sackcloth and dust
that tied me to the earth and
its aching, gasping heaves,

or Your voice that echoed
back, resounding in the flames,
from beyond the end of the world?




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