The fire isn’t always red—

cool blue of every shade

more often than not. It fades

and blooms a jagged line and we all wade

in its shallows and depths.


Fear that I’m irreparably flawed—

that is the scorching red.

Behind me, the ghosts of the dead

make me in their image. I bled

out and I breathed in.


Monster or maiden fair—

a tail coils around my porcelain thigh.

A bloody heart beats under a frozen sigh

and the crowds adore, the people cry.

I am who I have always been. 


©Ashley Herring Blake 2015