Roz Kaveney (rozk) wrote,
Roz Kaveney
rozk

For International Women's Day

Match-girl

Her father put her out into the snow.
Beats her, but leaves no bruises. Has a plan
someday soon he will sell her to some man
and has not touched her. Sees the fading glow

of the two coals the chestnut seller left
when he went home. Without them she'll be cold
She looks as if she's five or six years old,
is slightly older. Knows it is a theft

from father when she sets a match alight
to see the visions dancing in the flame
of palaces, of kingdoms with no name.
And then again. The flame against the night

feels like a mother. When it fades, she sighs.
With snow as comforter, she sleeps and dies.
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