Poetry‎ > ‎Reflector on the Post‎ > ‎

Antiquity of Fire

Saint Paul, 15 March 2011

How early
did humans
control fire?

The question
of the antiquity
of fire burns
like an irreversible
brush fire no one
expects will stop

Still I excavate
burned bones and
scorched artifacts
with a stainless steel
dental pick and
a dust bellows

Delirious from sun
stroke I blow
friable soil one
grain at a time for
irrefutable evidence
of controlled fire

I learned of fire
for the first time
in febrile dreams

My hand blisters
before my digits turn
to carbon dust and
orange embers coddle me
from frozen death
come winter