The Rambler

Burning Memories (original)

Posted in My Poems by Erik Lloyd Olson on April 17, 2010

No rays could burn me in that heavy wood
Whose shady birches veiled my childhood.
On the high summit of a clouded hill
That trapped the passing hours in quiet still
I lingered in a solitary den
Far from gray cities and the ways of men.
Here human sounds and lamps are out of reach
But flirting fireflies glow and swift bats screech.
No eye surveying from my porch can see
Beyond the veil of leafy canopy.

One day the ground secured beneath me breaks:
I shudder as my mother’s fear awakes
To blistering fire and rolling clouds of smoke;
We see half blind and breathing poison choke.
Upon my hill and through the grove I love
Fierce crackling flames arise and burn above,
The fire, expanding as the winds arise,
Shoot their long beams and kindle half the skies.
My mother grabs me as a hawk on prey;
Next thing I know we’ve flown ten miles away.

To see my house, shrubs, mighty trees all torn
Apart like straw my vision was reborn–
Forced from the shadows of a sheltering womb
That wrapped my half formed eyes to block out doom.
These flames which taught my early tears to flow
Illuminate the universe I know.


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