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#Inktober2019, Poems, Short Stories,

Inktober – Day 13: Ash

Today at church, the pastor asked us to place our hands on any part of our body where we needed healing.

I placed mine on my chest and centred it where I could feel the loudest thumps from – my heart.

You see, our love was a bonfire. Everyday with you was like a ceremony inside me. There were drum beats of joy, butterflies fluttering and nestling in weird places; my entire system conspiring to excite me. It was magical.

The fire never ceased to burn. Day after day, we would fuel our wonder until we ran out of wood. Then I started to throw pieces of my clothing into the flames. I was going naked but I didn’t care. The fire was my warmth. The drums never stopped playing.

You were supportive of my sacrifice. You would sit next to me and fan my embers. The ignited passions were short-lived. The flames were thirsty and demanded to drink. I began to pour myself into it. Cups became gallons. Gallons flowed into drums. I was relentless. I gave until I had nothing left to give. The tempo of the drums had slowed down but the beat was louder than ever. It sounded like war.

The fire was growing cold. We needed coal. It was then I realised that you were still fully clad. You even had a helmet on. I became the fire and we were dying out.

I should have seen it coming. You walked away from us, complete and whole while the charred parts of me burned to ashes. The drums were speaking but I was too blind to listen.

It’s been months now but I can still smell the smoke. The stench of burning flesh, muscles and fat sizzling like grilled meat in an open fire.

The drums never stopped playing.

My heart never stopped beating.

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