Dust thou art

by Hetty Mosforth

I sleep in dust
heaping it over
myself by the handful.

In the fire I forgot
In fear I forgot
who I was
and what.

All that is left is dust.

A crow-black, cassock-clad man
Stands squawking at passersby,
“For dust thou art
and unto dust thou shalt return.”

He waves a cross over the city ruin.

At night, the crackle-comfort memory
of flames keeps me warm.
Even when ice gives the Thames
a hard shell
And the white wisped moon
looks down on me
knowing

I have no fear.

Now.

I am a beggar in the street.
I am dust on the earth.