Those who listen for the sound of ash
say fire is an animal
that grows by drinking
the sap of wood and bone
and speaks in guttural continuo,
gold on yellow waves
scored over black char.
Embers taken by wind scribe
the intent to crown
every need for rebirth
with a given fact of darkness,
that exile pulled back overnight
through borders the moon traces.
in white light
dilutes the magical,
coyote not heard singing
the code to unlock all gates
and drop flints up moon-lit paths,
wings stacked on a bone-dry slope.
– Charles F. Thielman
Charles F. Thielman grew up in Charleston, S.C., was educated in Chicago, Ill., and has worked as a truck driver, city bus driver, and a bookstore clerk. He has published work with The Pedestal, Gargoyle Magazine, Poetry365, The Criterion [India], Poetry Salzburg [Austria], The Oyez Review, Windfall [Oregon], The Muse, Battered Suitcase, Poetry Kanto [Japan], Open Road, Poetry Kit and Pastiche [England], Belle Reve, Tiger’s Eye, and Rusty Nail. His chapbook “Into the Owl-Dreamed Night” is available here through Uttered Chaos Press. You can see a video of him reading at Tsunami Books here.