The scent of your sandalwood
was destined to burn itself out.
From the moment the match was struck
this inflamed stick of fragile incense
would only smolder for so long.
But I was intoxicated by fragrance
as the twig was slowly consumed,
mesmerized by pale smoke that
ballooned and rose into thin air,
bending and curling gracefully
like the body of a supple dancer.
Though our time was short as a fuse,
I gladly forgot myself in your ripples,
in wisps reaching toward the clouds
and the woody aroma you exhaled.
Ashes fell from the retreating ember,
to collapse like dreams on the dawn
and scatter your dust in my memory.
About the Poem
This poem tries to characterize the experience I have had with someone who surfaced at a distance and vanished with equal suddenness. Dedicated to Teddy.
This poem was completed September 20, 2003. It is previously unpublished in print.