The phoenix descends
into scorching streams of red anguish,
outstretched in a hope-quenching, thirsty blaze
of sulfurous vapors and stinging heat.
a charred heart,
and vulnerable to the core of mercy’s heat,
is refined in a furnace of suffering.
Resting in the pulse of crimson coals
crumbling into flakes of ashen grey.
Flames grow drowsy in the black routine of death
until a Breath
spoken upon ash
sparks new flame,
in the residue of blood.
Purified, the bird ascends over ash
on unleavened wings of sacrifice.
Ashes blow to the sky.