Watch the fire undress him,
how flame fingers each button,
rolls back his collar, unzips him
without sweet talk or mystery.
See how the skin begins to gather
at his ankles, how it slips into
the embers, how it shimmers
beneath him, unshapen, iridescent
as candlelight on a dark negligee.
Come, look at him, at all his goods,
how his whole body becomes song,
an aria of light, a psalm’s kaleidoscope.
Listen as he lets loose an opus,
night’s national anthem, the tune
you can’t name, but can’t stop humming.
There, he burns brilliant as a blue note.
BY AMAUD JAMAUL JOHNSON
 The Poetry Foundation
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