The Normandie was burning in New York harbor.
It was a nebulous sensation
the question of fire and the man
who watched the cork life vests bloom
how fascinating, how pure
to see the ignition of plasma
and watch its growth from birth
to groaning metal collapse
into the harbor, the water sprays
now floes of ice
like a knife at the throat
but isn’t that what love is?
A tough tug on the blade
that sharp edge sinking in, cold
despite the hothead willing it’s disaster?
Crippled in the moorings
capsized in the dew
flames that once burst, turned to wrinkles in the sheets
the indiscriminate apologies for waking up the ocean
for shaking the anchor’s chains
dumping out the bilge water for the hope that remains
to welcome the terrestrial spirit in the realm of the forgiven
to hold the bellows tight, when in whispers
she asks that you pump as hard as you can
to reignite the charcoal in the dark.