I kneel before
a hungry fire.
Mouth gaping
orange-black teeth gleaming.
It must be
fed and fed
and fed again
Fire keeper.
Kept by fire
In return.
A reciprocal relationship.
Moving in
As near as I can.
Just enough warmth
To encourage the loosening
of my muscles.
Body sinking.
A full breath drawn
into newly-released lungs.
Welcoming
a burst of heat
pushing into
the cells of my
cold, red face.
The windows behind me
Are so large
and daunting.
Single paned
and lightly armored
against this rare visitor,
the Arctic air.
I’m afraid
the cold has
crept in through the
surface area
uninvited
and set up camp.
This house transformed
into two continents.
A line in the middle
Of the floor
just beside the woodstove
Separating me from
Warmth
and shivering.
I hug my knees
And stay in the embrace
of fire.
Somehow, this moment
has invited me
to awe
All of these
sensations
These interacting forces.
All of this beauty
possessing me
And all of me
possessing this beauty.
Abiding in effortless silence
A subtle
holding of the breath
As if I am listening
for the sound
of a baby breathing.
Just to hear the snow.
Just to hear the night.
Just to witness this moment
unfolding.

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