Lighting a Candle I Cannot See


Often tease my hair

with lips stained ruby red

and walk through a hint of perfume

checking all of my angles

before I sit down to write.

As if preparing for courtship or celebration,

I practice the art of lighting a candle

I cannot see.

Ritual grounds palpable anticipation

so I don’t fly away


emptying, yet plump

with the daunting task of building something

in the air

with too many pieces

Knowing I can only summon all versions of myself

and still this is a lot to hope for.

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