burned alive

It was just as you might expect:
I blistered; I howled; I leaked
insufficient moisture to extinguish myself.
As the first of my ashes caught the wind,
the arsonist approached the charred ground
and apologized.
As if I were not cinders now.
As if “I’m sorry” could jumpstart a resurrection.

Next time, I will choose not to be born
in a body that breathes, that wants, that needs.
I will cast myself in iron,
melt and mold myself
into swiftest steel,
severing limbs and razing hearts
easy as lying.

Next time, I will not fear the inferno
that rises like a whirling gypsy,
inviting me to her burnished arms:

next time, I will love her,
and she will love me back.


Emily Rose Cole is an emerging poet, folksinger, and MFA-hopeful currently residing in Indianapolis. Her debut solo album, “I Wanna Know,” was released in May of 2012. She has forthcoming work in The Eunoia Review, Emerge Literary Journal, and The Rusty Nail.