How to Spend a Birthday

Light a match. Watch the blue part

                                                             flare like a shocked piñata

                                            from the beating
                                            into the sky,

                                                             watch how fast thin

wood burns & turns toward the skin,

the olive-orange skin of your thumb
                                                             & let it burn, too.

Light a fire. Drown out the singing cats.

Let the drunken mariachis blaze their way,

streaking like crazed hyenas

over a brown hill, just underneath

a perfect birthday moon.

Lee Herrick, "How to Spend a Birthday" from The Many Miles from Desire. Copyright © 2007 by Lee Herrick, published by WordTech Communications LLC.  Reprinted by permission of Lee Herrick.
Source: The Many Miles from Desire (WordTech Communications, 2007)
More Poems by Lee Herrick