Souvenirs from the Fire

Brown fox

The orange glow of the cigarette lighter, right below
the knob to the radio, how both clicked
when turned on.

The squares of charcoal
scattered in the sand, when cooled, how
we wrote our names on stones
The sky, where it had never been before.

That August of blueberries, so thick and wild
and sweet—what we didn’t eat, we wore
stained on our feet.

Foxes mating in the long grass; how their yips
wake us, how their bodies bend the grass.
Oh to be that kind of heat.

Even as a girl, I knew there was an art to stacking wood.

I am no longer cold in dreams.

All these days after, I can still smell
the pine sap on your fingers and the smoke
in your hair.

You–backlit and radiant, all spark and glow.

Poem by Julia Singer

Julia Klatt Singer is the poet in residence at Grace Nursery School. She is co-author of Twelve Branches: Stories from St. Paul, (Coffee House Press), author of In the Dreamed of Places, (Naissance Press), A Tangled Path to Heaven, Untranslatable, (North Star Press), and her most recent chapbook, Elemental (Prolific Press). Audio poems from Elemental are at OpenKim (, as the element Sp. She’s co-written numerous songs with composers Craig Carnahan, Jocelyn Hagen, and Tim Takach.