Audio: Read by the author.
In China someone closed your leaves
in tiny fists that grip the smoke
that dried you. A world away I wait
by another fire. The cup waits
with me. The little blue dragon
that lives in my stove does his work.
The kettle begins to sing
the one note of its one song.
The day becomes itself beyond
the glass of the kitchen window.
I pour the kettle and you become
again yourself, but haunted now
by memory of a distant fire.
In this steam rising as smoke
I remember myself, who I was,
before I knew all night the flames,
before I tasted you, or knew your name.
Michael Dechane is a former carpenter, videographer, and speech writer. A native of Odessa, Florida, he currently resides in Zürich, Switzerland. His poetry is forthcoming in Saint Katherine Review.
The Image archive is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.