Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Untitled, Audrey

by Audrey

I am a cigarette nestled
Between the splayed fingers
Of something large and capricious.
I am held to its lit match,
Awakened to the possibility of burning.

My feet
Resist the flame. It is too early yet
to be engulfed.

Two weeks later, its lips take a drag
And I’ll admit that I submit
Just enough to glow red and curl at the periphery.

Through whatever will I have, I try
to disintegrate only slowly, but you can hear
the sound like ripping as the embers dance upward, almost festive

Almost reveling in the smoke I become
Through the nostrils of an unknowable cruelty,
I am dissipated.

A long inhalation
I am spent, weakened
Turning to ash by degrees

I have not yet fallen.
I will, inevitably
But I hold on as an act of blind faith.

The phone rings.
The small vibration is enough
To disperse the ash of me

I am in the car moments later
The window rolls down
I am flicked out into darkness.

When I hit, I tumble violently. Embers
Loosening, spreading, bouncing to oblivion.


about the poem.
This poem is about the time between learning that my pregnancy was high risk and the final trip to the hospital the night that Eva died. -Audrey

about the poet.

Audrey is the mother of three. She is raising two and writes at Glutton Button


  1. Audrey I think cigarettes and trauma go together, its an unpopular pairing but true. You have started me thinking in a whole new direction with this. Well done.

  2. Audrey, this is...I don't even have words to say how poignant this poem feels. Beautifully and painfully written.

  3. I'm with Julie. I haven't smoked a cigarette for a long time but I often wanted one during that time in the hospital.
    That slow burning, the way the ash clings to the end of a cigarette. Perfect. Sadly perfect.


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