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I’ve got the uber-talented Joshua here!
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FIREBUG

Fire falls like a fold of floundering ferrets from her face and burns the world.
Because just yesterday she watched the sun poise and coil like a venomous snake.

Her mother lay there like an old carpet; that every time you stepped on,the dust rose to your face and stung your eyes but not with enough force to make your eyes water,only to register its presence at the back of your mind.
She watched her eight year old son whose eyes were wide enough to consume every smiling face and every walking story in a heartbeat. Those eyes were sunken now; he was confused.
The way that she was about Fermat’s last theorem. Why are X,Y,Z and n negative integers and so what if n wants to be greater than two?
But this was not a number theory that needed to be understood.
She wished it was,but it wasn’t.
She could see that he was grappling with the situation,trying to sketch it into a mental sheet of paper so that it would make sense. But every time he tried, the pencil snapped in two and fell like a love that was too afraid to fly.
A lot of things seemed too afraid to fly that day: the birds in their nests, the kites at the park, looking morose as they gave in cowardly to the bark of the wind. Her prayers too seemed unwilling to soar and many times she would sit back and scream at the ceiling like it was some contraption she had invented.
She embraced his tiny body and felt the blood running through it and like a pivoted bar falling into its notch, the grip was fastened.
Nothing was going to break it; not today, maybe tomorrow, but not today.
Because hugs were not hugs unless the skin of the hugged agreed to compress against the hugger; unless its soul welcomed the other in that brief eternity.
The air sandwiched between them must be in coincidence.
Only after these acts of correspondence are observed to the letter can the bodies truly latch onto one another and nothing can distort that moment, not a forest fire not a stray bullet.

He withdrew his face from her bosom and looked her in the eyes.
She saw the tears well in them and then subside.
She saw that he understood.
The message had been clear: I am home.
Because no matter what ends of the world a lie travelled, the lie would always belong to the liar.
She needed him to know that no matter how many fountains he drank from, she would always be the source that replenished him.
She would always be warmth and a good book.
The smell of coffee and the casual shoulder brush with a stranger.
The ensuing apology and the understanding smile.
She would be all the intimacy he needed even after steamy nights at a friends party and at the back of an old truck.
She would be all the breathtaking views his eyes longed to see even if he sailed all the glassy seas and danced on every Himalaya.
She would also be the constant headaches and the pain in his back.

The memory that she had stabbed his grandmother twenty-two times and watched the life leave her eyes while the kettle screamed in the kitchen like a lost child.
Like a lost note missed by an overconfident finger and demanding retribution.
Because notes don’t like to be missed; everyone knows that.
She would be the nudge in his head every time he was upset,the nudge to act quickly and attack the upsetter.
The nudge to protect himself with worries that he would always find in the pocket of his jeans.She would be cold nights and unrequited love.
Because home was not just where the heart was but the realization that the heart was not and could not be some place else and that it might as well sit its ass there.
Because home was not a promise of sweet dreams and laughter.
Home was a promise that when darkness engulfed the mind’s deepest recesses there would be a perceptible nod somewhere in the corner.
A nod of approval, a nod that would mean the pain had only begun, a nod that would forbear many tragedies and hold the assurance that escape would come,narrowly and with the possibility of being missed.
But that it would come.
And that was enough.
”It’s time for you to go” she said.
He turned around slowly without a word and left the house.
She watched just like she had watched many times before a part of herself leave.
It wasn’t the leaving that hurt her, or the possibility that it would want to stay wherever it went,it was the fact that it would cope, survive, thrive without her auspices.

She picked the gallon on the table,opened it and spilled its contents around her and on the woman lying lifeless a few feet from her.
She bent and kissed her cold face.
She then took out the box of matches from her back pocket, deftly struck it, and tossed the hungry flame on the dead body.
She took the stool in the corner, sat and with the lack of interest evident on a student’s face when the teacher broaches a subject he already knows.
She watched it eat its way through the woman’s clothes like a carnivore with a proclivity to solicitude. The drapes caught fire and so did the ornamental table she bought on Christmas.
Smoke swam in the air now but it did not disturb her. She could hear voices across the street and the distant whir of a police vehicle.
She leant back and let the flames tickle her bare feet like sexual foreplay.
She closed her eyes as the smell of her own flesh wafted upwards and reminded her of a family barbecue her mother had forced her to attend many years back.
One of the many family gatherings that did not go well.
It was tradition at these gatherings for her to read a poem she had just written,she could not remember the title but the lines never left her.
With great effort,she parted her lips slightly and began to whisper the words as they came to her

Fire falls from my face like a fold of floundering ferrets and burns the world because just yesterday I watched the sun poise and coil like a venomous snake…

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Sigh…
:’)
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