Across the water

Katherine Garon

Windblown clouds of smoke roll heavy over the bay
drawn out across the rippling mirror before us
to coalesce ash-grey with predawn mist
like the exhalation of a prayer in winter,
and the swirl of breath between your lips.
Scent of cinders, saltwater spray,
cigarette hanging loosely between your fingertips.
Flickers of cherry-red fire burst from windows,
reaching like pleading hands to the sky
the embers of their prayers carried on the breeze.
Indifferent streaks of sunlight smile down
from the pastel winter sunrise we had come to see.

I remember you always in that way.
Your smoke-grey casket, cherry-red roses, and you,
smiling faintly like a winter sunrise,
like a house ablaze just across the water.