Jul 31, 2015

magnesium ribbon

Not a spark, but a flame on a candle. In a dark room, our hearts come unlocked without warning and the little flame comes into contact with our silver strip: we are set off. A ball of blinding white furiously ingesting as much oxygen as it can, sliding along the ribbon, gobbling gobbling, destroying its path to exhale a cloud of dense white fumes. Conversations that run too late, smiles too eager, we fall over ourselves to offer story after story. This is me, my life and all I know; and what about you dear, what about you? Stunned for a moment, all we can do is stand aside and be witnesses to how we burn. But then our eyes start to hurt. It burns too bright; it frightens us. We scramble. Put it out. The night returns like a closed curtain, only the little flickering candle flames as always. But the ribbon is still half new, glinting in the light, whispering of its potential. Ten seconds, twenty. Careful now...we put it to the candle again, but cautiously, at a distance, and then we seal it in a glass jar. Reduce the amount of oxygen it can get. Make it last. We scramble to protect what is left of our dazzling magnesium star. Soon we will be but ash.

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