Illuminated around a fire
our cold backs to the night
feet half-buried in cool sand
bird-heads cocked we stare
at lanterns passing.

We wonder why they were launched
why these human-made fireflies
were sent off to wander
the blue black pre-night air
past the still moon.

Papyrus paper
spirited by the lighted candle.
Ancient skin and flame.
The remembrance of someone gone
soul symbol adrift.

With the ashy end of a stick
we attempt to write our names
on the circling stone –
the feeble boundary between us
and burn –

discover that right angles ease
while curves resist
manoeuvring, drawing out
to meaningful loops
on mineral – and sky.