Ashes to Ashes

Ashes! Ashes!
They all fall down.

— Unknown

The ashes fall lightly on me like dust.
I brush them off and they’re gone.

At this distance the fire’s still palpable.
The raging inside recedes.

I can watch as they try to flee.
I can watch as they try to live.

It didn’t have to be this way.
I didn’t want it to come to this.

But they wouldn’t leave me alone.
They wouldn’t let me be.

They’re bullies. They’re many.
They’re running out of time.

I don’t know how many will die.
No one knows.

Bodies count, ashes don’t.

Ω

This week’s post is inspired in part by the YeahWrite prompt, from way-way back on July 5th.

It’s also inspired by the wasps loitering with intent somewhere near my front door.

© Indian Macgyver 2017

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23 Comments Add yours

  1. What a chilling piece! And I loved the after-note about the wasps!

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    1. Much appreciated! The wasps may now be an afterthought so that’s good news – but only time will tell (dun, dun, dun).

      Liked by 1 person

  2. the last line hit me.

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    1. Thanks! I wasn’t sure about that line but I couldn’t think of anything better.

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  3. mixedbag says:

    “Bodies count, ashes don’t” what a brilliant line!

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    1. Well I’m beside myself – I tried for something better but couldn’t pull anything together.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. mixedbag says:

        But this was really good, with and without the note about wasps. I voted for you this week, looking forward to read what you write next!

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      2. So kind, really! I too look forward to reading what you and the other yeahwrite participants conjure up this week. I’m looking forward to the microprose prompt hopefully I’ll get something in and on time this go round.

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  4. VPGrey says:

    Lovely. Poignant imagery.

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    1. Thanks – and you’ve got some good imagery yourself. I hope to get you some feedback this weekend, if I’m lucky!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. VPGrey says:

        I look forward to it. 🙂

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  5. innatejames says:

    I like the rhythm in the stanza that starts “They’re bullies…” The two amphibrachs followed by the iambic tetrameter. It sped up my reading to the end. I did wonder about the ash/wasp metaphor the poem suggests. The poem might benefit from expanding on the similarities between the two objects.

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    1. Thanks for the insight (I will have to google amphibrachs to truly appreciate it). I agree opening up a little more would help.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. innatejames says:

        An amphibrach is foot of poetic meter like iambic or trochee. It’s three syllables: unaccented, accented, unaccented. Such as in “they’re BULL-ies”

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      2. ha you saved me the google search! i owe you one. let me know what i can do for you sometime.

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  6. Trish Tuthill says:

    I love the wasp postscript, as well. Without it, this is a dark piece. With it, it’s almost comical. I enjoyed both readings of it. Well done.

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    1. Awesome! Yeah I my fiction goes dark but I’m typically a happy camper. I blame Murder She Wrote repeats for my outlook.

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  7. Asha Rajan says:

    Those wasps certainly met a fiery end!

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    1. Indeed they did and frankly they deserved it. I really felt trapped. But who knows perhaps they were harbingers of something worse to come.

      PS It was your prompt that I used, right?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Asha Rajan says:

        It was indeed my prompt that you used 🙂

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      2. i thought it might be but had to be sure. i saw the prompt just after the grids closed and it stuck with me, very nice. what piece is it from?

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Asha Rajan says:

        Thank you. It’s from a short story I wrote. It’s the opening line (and the closing line).

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      4. if it’s on your blog i’ll have to stop by and check it out!

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