The ancient bridge is alight with rage
burning bright like dragon's breath--
fierce, invigorating, brimming in age.
she had been a structure of the primeval kind
wooden bones tied together with tendons of twine
and sweat the subtle scent of forest from pine.
a mother she had been to the lands that relied
on her undying presence throughout bodies of time,
their parted lips looking for a voice in their midst.
yet, it was not soft thanks nor words of praise
but instead scorn that was spat at her from the
toothless mouth whom she would steadily aid.
loveless from the moment of her birth--built by force
hammering nails until they fit (and she bled)
wires strung tense above her, intended to strain.
and yet through it all she kept her balanced grace--
did not falter--not even from the howling remarks
of the de-hearted winds that carved scars through her;
not when the snow seasonally perched on her back,
refused to budge; filling her caves with ice, 'til the sun
melted them like tears, meanwhile searing her skin;
not wavered by the storm of steps--the most agonizing,
this relentless drum-beating, a headache’s throbbing
that never gave her even a heartbeat's rest.
thus the flames became the sole love to taste her
intimate, attentive; the blaze left no part unsavored
they carefully consumed her whole, limb by limb.
first stroking her weary wings until they lowered;
blanketing her shivering legs that always stood firm
but, exposed, had wanted to be covered.
licking delicately the buckling belly that was worn raw;
what rapture! what warmth! a foreign feeling of awe
for it had heretofore only ever known violation as law.
and so at last the foundation creaked, fatigued;
her last breath (one she had been holding for eternity)
erupted as a half-happy cry, for she resolved to release;
the weight of sisyphean struggle collapsed piece by piece
and as the fire consumed her, all pressure was relieved--
for ashes perceive not burden--they are as light as dreams.