Can words burn?
Can a written voice be lost?
Once lit do they melt back into
the passion that pronounced them
ready to form new sounds
like a caterpillar preparing to fly?

Or are they still there,
a silent memory in the air
holding their shape like a
homeopathic dilution,
still potent,
still carrying their flavour, their feeling,
their texture, their meaning?

Does the flame launch them onto the wind
to carry invisible poems
to every doorstep?

Do they hover near ears that might hear,
bobbing like corks on a
swelling sea
waiting to be caught?

Are they owned by their authors
or are they free,
a gift of sudden beauty for you and me
like a piece of coral
washed up on the sands,
like volcanic glass
rescued from the fire?