two fire-sticks in numbed hands, wind-bitten, the light dancing from the snow’s crystal edge. rubbing in the dark. nothing — then a spark.
will it die? what have you to feed it?
Little Match Girl, we’re told as a lesson. which one? that sulfur and friction fire? or that hunger kills — a light, a life?
or that both require choices, the knife of sacrifice, the magician’s wand. to eat, something must die. bonds of energy released, dancing and kinetic, separating force from ash. dry moss to the flint, the bull’s taut throat to the blade.
sacrifice: to make sacred, to feed the fire of the holy.
it feeds: flames and arms reach for the sacrifice. reach as a forest fire, as a hunger-panged man beating a child with a stick for the last bit. a mindless grasp, the infant’s hand for the breast, the candle for the curtains, the wolves for winter’s wanderer.
the wise wall stones for a hearth and keep the fire fed. they pull in the wanderer from the dark, leave a carcass for the wolves. the magician’s wand: the stick that feeds the fire.
forge and cook-fire, light in the dark: she begins from the spark of need and satiation shared.