this is the season of fire after the summer of water and i know now that my flame burns inside strong as ever singing my worth and i have words to spit out into this world, hot heavy and sour

this is the season of fire and how can i explain that to you

this is the season of fire after the summer of water and i know now that my flame burns inside strong as ever singing my worth and i have words to spit out into this world, hot heavy and sour and i don’t have to hold in my passions or self, i don’t have to go with the flow, i don’t have to mold to my surroundings, i get to say this is me! this is now! this is what im going to do! and they have to listen – do you hear that part – they have to listen

because if not, i will burn this place down.

and i am a flame unseen perhaps but so were these wildfires before they were spotted, as they were already burning tree into ash and

i am not unspoken, not anymore.

i have words in my hands and my fingertips and i won’t let you put your melancholy into my skin once again, i cannot agree that life is all hard because isn’t it not about happy or sad or good or bad but rage and emotion and expression and madness and

i don’t know why i feel like the candles in my room speak to me at night but they whisper in conspiracy to me

reach reach reach

and they tell me

higher and onwards and grab what you want and be who you are and let the doubt burn burn away.

words etched in tree branches, dark soot in chimney grates, and theres a heat in myself that feels a bit like anger not quite too late

i was water running smoothly hiding deeply speaking softly and now i wonder

what if i set myself ablaze

if i let out my stories will this world burst into flames

or will i finally let all the pressure escape.

so, my old washing machine would electrocute you slightly, lightly, brightly if you put your hand on the wash button and so instead, we never did laundry

and yet when i tell this story to KC he tells me of sticking the knife into the toaster when he was a child and being shocked over and over again, not understanding why he felt what he felt, not knowing to stop


one time i sat on a dock on a lake in montana, watching lightning and storm clouds brood and cover half the sky, shocking the water, as thunder boomed and on the other half of the lake

only sunshine.

if i covered my left eye i saw chaos and firestorm and if i covered my right eye, i saw a summertime lakefront paradise, sunshine and birdsong

do you see

the fire and water dance together

it isnt one or the other

but while the water absorbs your sorrows and holds your chaos and softens the darkness

the fire bursts from the sky and the ground, runs through sockets and toasters and up trees and out mountains and

through my





art by Vykky Gamble


from coals back to fire

im remembering perfection doesnt exist and instead, we do.

yesterday the winds were blowing and the lake had waves and its like a season ending or times are turning or something, something dramatic about change

and i feel light, light like the eagle when he rides the breeze above the dock, light like singing so loud in the car with the windows down, light like laughter

and i feel almost silly for how heavy life has been

im remembering perfection doesnt exist and instead, we do.

my best efforts will only ever be that and thats what theyve been and everything thats been awkward or terrible or humiliating or embarrassing or a failure has no right to be judged, it just is, it just is.

and its fun to put labels on me and on things but sometimes a bad day is just a bad day or a bad mood is because im lonely or i stubbed my toe or i need a shower or its sticky hot in the house and i had to make small talk and im grumpy.

maybe im not broken and nothing is all that wrong

maybe im broken and put together in the way that we all are

and things have actually been so incredibly incredibly right.

(right, not 100%-and-A+ right, right as in sun on my skin and moving my body and laughter so frequent i cant imagine half a day without it – right as in seeing all my friends and dancing until dawn and brothers-again and taking-the-risks and a job that i care about, a job thats Important, and being so in love with the people in my life its ridiculous,  it should be a movie, it should be a lifetime, that kind of right)

so dont let the wind blow away summer yet, dont let the seasons change, i want this one, i take it all back, im not mad at the hardness of the sun anymore, its a miracle if i believed in those, its a gift, its perfection in its absurdity

and so before its over

let me speak

let me speak and not only about hard things

i have words to say about the wind on my face, my hair blowing in every direction and the waves hitting the shore like its a beach, like its the ocean, like its natural music, and i want you to see how far across the blue shimmer water the trees build up into hillsides. and the boats all rock side to side like little dancers and its everything i ever want, this moment, right now. the eagle rides the wind for the joy of it and so do the sailboats and i stand balancing in the whirl of all this, grounded, soaring, laughing

all we are is our stories and i want to tell mine with hope again.

and then i was gone all day, returning late late in the special star-view blackness of night. but when i opened up my car door, the wind was still there. and with the water slapping the shore, the feel of that air moving everything back into place, my sleepy-eyed brain recognized it all and felt


‘this is the lake’ i told my also-arriving friend

as if that explained anything at all

‘this is the lake,

and thats the wind.’

and i breathed it all in, and then let the world breathe me out again