Fire

Marking our winters together,

first up in the morning checks the embers,

so any vital signs might be rekindled.

.

Failing that, I journey out to fetch the coal,

perhaps a well seasoned cherry log, our treat,

odour – vermillion. Slipper shod round to the shed,

contemplating cold patterned leavings in the snow.

.

I consider the teeth clenched path; you warm in tangled bed,

then, lamenting the lazy left last time bucket,

slide down to empty tinker crunch ash,

playing the ice orchestra and wishing above all for wellies.

.

Darling, the clinker hill reaches the sky,

in far off spring we will push it down

to the ditch below the snow line,

between where we live and the cows.

.

Swinging up to the house to scrunch last week’s news,

I lay morning sticks crackling from an orange string bag,

then sparingly, the coal, but leave room for breath.

Striking a match I turn on the life support, a tender touch paper,

sharing the conviction that our winter child will thrive.