I am at a birthday party. It must be my party because I am blowing out candles. I am huffing and puffing, but the flames will not go out. The candles multiply. Their flames and shadows cover the cake, then the table, then the room. The fire refuses to extinguish. The candles grow longer and taller, and they peer down at me as though I am some kind of an insect. Their fiery wigs ignite all the furniture in the room, and I am surrounded.
Tonight, I am a flower. I have a lion’s mane constructed of pink petals. I whisper and whistle in the wind; the sky is endless, as is my spirit. I lie alone in a field of only me. The rest is air, and for the first time in my small life, I can breathe without worrying about breathing on somebody. The grass tickles my leafy feet. I am the prettiest flower in the meadow. I am the only one.
I am in a room filled with poisonous snakes. They do not know of my intrusion. As long as I remain still, they will not notice me. The silent serpents decorate my feet with leftover scales as they slither over me. I stop myself from trembling, for my life is on the line. I stare straight ahead, ignoring the warm yet shiver-inducing string of life that slinks up my back. There is a candle in the room. One of the snakes scoots a little too close, and the candle tips. I am frozen to a whole new degree. The flame begins to spread, and the snakes become uneasy. There is no escape. There is no way out. I still cannot move, for the snakes will attack me. I cannot not move, however, for the fire will swallow me whole. I must choose which I would rather be consumed by. The snakes are everywhere. The fire is everywhere.
I am at the North Pole. I assume this because though I cannot see Santa Claus, I see ice everywhere I look. Thick walls of ice mirror me with care, as though my reflection is the most important thing to them. They let their cool acceptance gently settle over me like a blanket. I sigh, and my breath freezes in midair; it falls to the ground, and suddenly I am a co-creator of the beauty I see. I turn in awe, and out of the corner of my eye I think I see a lit match in another delicate reflection. I whirl around, but there is no flame to be seen. I wonder what I saw.
I am back in the field in my flowery form. I look up at the stars that are each trying to shine brighter than their companions; the light of each inspires another. They seem to go on forever. Tonight seems different; I feel lonely. Though I am still the prettiest flower, I feel for the first time that it is unfair; I am also the ugliest. Suddenly a roar hits my ears, but it is no sound from my lion’s-maned self. I turn and see the grass that once covered the meadow being ****** up into a vacuum of fire. The fire is a true wildfire; it is a rebellious child. It stretches to the sky and across the horizon, but still it is not satisfied. I witness it live while it dies, burning bright, but not realizing that it is burning itself. It comes towards me. I cannot move—I am a flower.
I am in a white room that goes on forever. The ceiling is not high, but the walls never cease. In the room are the people I love. They stand in a line that matches the infinity wall, and they hold hands. They smile at me with their mouths, but their eyes do not change. This makes me uneasy. Without their smiling,
dedicated eyes, they seem to be different people. I decide to leave it be and go to hug everyone. Suddenly I am crying. It feels like a goodbye.
I am fire. I am not in a fire, nor am I on fire, but I am fire. The fire has trapped me; it has taken me under its sizzling wing, and I fear my soul is melting. The fire is in me, and I am being consumed from the inside, and I cannot escape, for when I drink water it only boils. I see my beloveds again. This time no part of them smiles; they run in fear before I can ask them for help. I run after them, begging them with cries, fiery cries that always sound angry even though I am not. I run…I am running too fast, too fast, and I catch up with my family, but I cannot stop, and before I know it I have burned them to a crisp, but I did not mean to; I would never mean to, but suddenly they are gone. I try to stop running; I try to trip myself, skid, anything to protect my loved ones, but I am no longer in control. I am no longer the fire; the fire has become me. It takes my body and my memories without my permission and uses them against me, and I cannot stop it. I cannot stop myself. I burn and melt and fry my cherished people, and I cannot help but cry. I have consumed myself. I am fire. Fire is me.
Everyone is gone.