Jacob Silkstone

For his daughter, learning fire

Sometimes verbs are stopped mid-movement
and held to a page like pictures:
you, crouched by the darkening wood,
new sounds mouthed over and over –
the rustle of a twig stirring
a cauldron of bright-grey ashes,
the soft hiss as flame meets water.
The sparks fall like snow catching fire

and throb like stars against your shoes;
the moon is a dream you once had
and past it things yet to be dreamt –
people who don’t know you tonight
but will swap memories with you
like presents: their first love, the time
you played with fire and watched the night
suddenly become beautiful.


Jacob Silkstone recently completed an MA in Creative Writing at Lancaster University, had no idea what to do next, and ended up volunteering as a primary school teacher in Bangladesh. He has previously been published in Cake Magazine and The Cadaverine.


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