Phlogiston

1 November 2016

A nonexistent element. The theory of phlogiston was devised as an explanation as to why some things burned. Materials which had lots of phlogiston were supposed to burn well, releasing the element during combustion. Disproved with the discovery of oxygen.


We need to know why we blaze, when
nothing happens as
life escapes from an aviary of scabs.

We breathe in our canopies. Watch the basket of
wants – our morning beggary,
the mansuetude of respite.

When nobody knows you,
as though pain needs an audience.
Punch the sky, kick the dirt.

Then piss out your small complaints, maybe
beat the wife & kiddies maybe
run down that odd person outside the shopping strip.

Anyone could understand, it’s
an element & they each have
their own course, their need.

Our trees are just dinner,
other life an inconvenience. We eat incandescence
as frantic hands simultaneously paint windows in their fear.

The animal intelligence avoids our sunlight.
Earth serves flammability poorly.
We know so little, in certain conflagration.

There are no apologies in legends
& futures can’t by definition
live in those written towns.

 


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