Morning fire

I spoke with an Element this morning,
not one of the hundred eighteen,
one of the five-or-so.

I mentioned that I was mortal and it was not and it asked, “Is that why you love me?”
On reflection, it is.

“You are the fire that my grandmother knew, and her mother, and her mother…”

You do not list the fathers, the fire said.

So I thought about them. A sea captain, a handful of soldier/farmers, a banker, a doctor, and — let’s be absolutely clear — probably a hundred branching generations of farmers, that’s how the world has stayed fed.

The fire was right. I don’t often think of them, just my Dad. It’s the grandmothers whose hands I see when I am working.