Blue Flame

I remember the plastic on the windows
to hold back the winter; little spiders
caught between pane and plastic, half frozen,
in our little wooden cabin in the North Woods
of the Upper Peninsula. We two sat on the couch
while the babies slept in the next room.
I think you were writing a letter,
lost somewhere on route to the Amazon
where you left your heart, leaving me to
your tears. Maybe you were thinking in
Portuguese when the little five year old girl asked,
“Is the blue part of the flame hotter than the yellow, mommy”;
full of curiosity and mischief. I know now you
were trying to catch a memory, to fly across the
expanse of distance and time, to smell home
and touch those warm blue waters,
when you replied, “I don’t know. Touch it and find out.”
And I did.

– Previously published 1992


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