Poetry: Dante's Mermaid

I found this poem in my archives and I honestly can't remember if I've ever shared it here so I thought I'd post it.  I remember writing it and feeling very fiery and alive, full of furious possibility - I love that feeling.

Dante's Mermaid

The pool is on fire
hell at liquid ground zero
the sky a riot of smoke whorls
I am alone under the apocalypse
the tree out front tossing sparks
the yard alive
crawling with ruddy fever
The pool is boiling
I want to dive in
sear the flesh from my bones
with a splash
toss flame-highlighted hair in an arc
Dante’s mermaid
from some fantastical ninth ring
This is the end
or else
some violent new start
phoenix from ashes
and other clichés that define my world
The pool is on fire
so is my blood
and in burning alive
I am set free


- Corinne Simpson