Dancing on coals

by You Have My Word

Be on your toes
like you’re dancing on coals.

I’ve got no place to go.
Not even home feels like home…
anymore.
And it’s cold
outside as I wander around
and snow falls –
gently at first to cover,
but soon it will shroud
and cloud
the feeling of ever feeling
like I’ll feel wanted again.

It’s now
that I wish I could dance on coals
because it would melt the snow –
so hot it would scald and singe
and sever and seal skin
and lips
so I say the right thing
so I wouldn’t have to walk on such thin

ice
cold in-
side, now out-
side my own mind
and a mighty chasm is growing –
you know? Like when you’re a little kid
trying to climb from one limb
of a tree to another
branch of another tree
and they get thinner towards the end
but you really feel like you can make it,
not break it
as you stretch out
and reach on bending tree bow
across chasmic, cosmic gaps
in the fair, societal system.

But the coals burn instead
and the branch you thought would hold
is now a smouldering pile
of bro-
ken bows
and could-have-been
should-have-been
would-have-been
homes
made of sticks and stones
but it’s now just ember glows.
And all I can do
is be on my toes
as I dance across man-made,
will-someday-keep-someone-warm
coals.

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