A WOMAN DANCES AT HER LAST CAMPFIRE, Kourtnie McKenzie

A Woman Dances at Her Last Campfire
by Kourtnie McKenzie

She dances as fire
escaping from the wood-pile, as smoke
lifting arms in calligraphic lines;
                                      she’s rising
in temperature, casting shadows 
on earth, till the log snaps, 
                                      and embers fall 
                                      into stillness;

the campground turns to look 
at her mid-song, but she’s in a grand pause
as she scatters 
kindling from her palm,

as she chooses another playlist 
from the cellphone in her 
pocket, another rhythm 
shared between footsteps and her earbuds; 
 
then she tangles the bright cord
in her curly hair, and her oversized sleeves—even her jeans 
get involved—struggle to whip free, lashing wilder, 
wider, like the universe is ready
to give her more space than her body.
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