Funeral Rites for a Cremation by Ren Martinez

a phoenix cannot rise from ashes alone

the desire to burn has to calcine the bones of its corpse

before rising from the dead

should embers curl through our marrow like an overlooked road

it is only a matter of time before we both are deconstructed

reduced to carbon and curling up like too-sweet smoke

they say that controlled fires prevent further destruction

rolling down mountains like the sweep of a lover’s hands

yours were always too cold to keep me warm

instead I shriveled in the winter of our bed

my breath rising like steam in the space between our bodies

wishing for a way to burn

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