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Poem: "Two Sticks Together" - The Wordsmith's Forge — LiveJournal
The Writing & Other Projects of Elizabeth Barrette
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Poem: "Two Sticks Together"

This poem is from the April 2, 2013 Poetry Fishbowl.  It was inspired by prompts from mdlbear, aldersprig, and wyld_dandelyon.  It has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette.


Two Sticks Together


It was not friction
that brought forth fire
into the hands of man,
but magic:

a hunter with his spear
and a gatherer with her digging-stick,
both of them hungry and cold,
the dead goat already stiff beside them.

He thought of the summer sun
and she thought of the hot rocks
in that place where the ground smoked

as they held each other
and their tools.

They did not mean
to make magic,
it just happened,
yellow and red flames
springing out from their
two sticks together.

Yelling, they dropped the sticks,
and the flames caught
in a tuft of dry grass.

They saw the light,
felt the heat,
learned what fire ate
and fed it more wood.

They roasted the dead goat
over the fire, and tasted,
and it was good.

They were the first shamanfolk,
hailed for their discovery of fire --
but it was the man's staff
and the woman's wand
that made the real difference.

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