In Fire

A wildfire roaring
beyond the river 
that will protect my home.

In the middle of flames,
improbably there,
incontrovertibly there:
a door. 

Through the door —
can you see it? It’s what might be

as described in my long-disused
Bible.  It has it all: flaming sword, angel,
fine strong tree with a serpent
lounging among its roots.

It’s so dangerous, scream some
onlookers. It’s so clearly
not real, scream others.
Stay put, idiot, that’s a real fire
over there,
scream even more onlookers
less eager for 

From this side of the river,
it’s a glory door, all that was
ever promised is through there,
right down to that exciting
and vital snake. But seeing the fire
— what if I burn? What if I don’t burn
and can’t turn back?
What if the door closes behind me
once I’m through?  What if
the angel strikes me down
before I even approach,
saying, “you know the rules…”

Smoke rising, flame rising.
I’m safe here for now
on my side of the river

and I can’t help it,
I stare down at the water
accusingly, furious
that it makes it so easy
to hesitate when
all that’s at stake is
how I choose

to burn.

About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

3 responses to “In Fire

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