Sara Pirkle Hughes

The Fire Next Door  

The sound the house made
as fire spread its paws
through every room
was like an old hound
stretching in his sleep, deep
sighs punctuated by growls,

and being children, we watched,
wide-eyed, as flames licked
dawn’s open palm,
and we laughed, looking
at the world’s misery,
mistaking it for a pet.

Sara Pirkle Hughes is a Southern poet, an identical twin, a breast cancer survivor, and a university instructor.