ashes ashes

ashes ashes

Fire drills are no longer about


The school practices for

"a situation."

The youngest have no idea

what that means.

We adults do.

We stand in the fall sunshine,

marked out evenly across the 

green field and blue sky,

discouraging whispering

while also rejoicing in their

casual silliness,

their ignorance.

The principal's voice:

the ominous "situation" -

our minds retrieve

images we wish we could 


If only we could return

to the clean

engulfing flames,

a bad wire,

a freak lightning strike,

stop drop and roll.

Every night Cedar sings

ashes ashes

and I see all those 

plagued children

falling down.