Ashes Rain, Coast to Coast

What ashes fall upon the winter snow

that traveled through the ozone to our door

from liquid fires, raging as they flow

like rivers by the California shore?


A wedding dress in flakes as fine as whispers,

the fragments of the crib a father framed,

all the photo books, brothers and sisters.

Alas—these ashes bear too many names


and smoke-stained faces to identify

the separate family stories raining here.

But history says a place called Paradise

was lost, and now their past is singed and seared—


and mingles with a jet stream in the sky,

and rains across the continent like tears.





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