Persist Pele

By Emma Indelicato

The volcano survives because she is desperate

climbs out through the crust

when the continents grant

her the opportunity

a narrow crag

the window to burst through

molten shards against the seas

sharp like fire

against the current with magma and strife

flailing her molasses limbs

screeches like clanging metal blacksmith sweat

and blood turns boiling metal into a brimstone weapon

into basalt armor

iridescent axes and onyx swords

into a new creation stronger

heavier and more dangerous than anything

before her persistence

it is violence

The living is attracted to victory of another’s war

forests and beasts and gods chase at her skirts

cling to her as if to keep from drowning

she is driven mad from mothering

being the only home in the middle of a blue wilderness

but when she is at her highest the erosion is most rapid

frost and sun

ice and wind

and the rain tear her down

and ebony tears tangle with dirty hair

manically forged and ripped out

noosed by an moss-green collar

adorned by malignant crystals sutured in her skin

she cuts away with a scissor tongue of lava and heartache

hot like cut glass

she is an enemy in a battle she was born fighting

and the fight never ends

as long as the earth drifts

onward and oozes her soul

syrupy and scalding

and any sugar-cane-sweetness turns to ashes in her

teeth gnashing while hoping to breathe

a sigh instead of a scream

Kaylee WarrenComment