Tuesday, November 15, 2016

The Little Match Girl


In the dark, a little girl in a cotton shawl
struck a match to keep warm.
It illumined the stone structure
of the Peace Tower she leaned against,
the gargoyles against the night sky.
Gothic architecture
reaching almost to heaven
stretched its lacy fingers
blotting the stars with its handkerchief,
its rhetorical icons
simmering prayers in the shadows.

There was a patchwork quilt
of nations, that had grown faded
with the rain and snow,
of the many colors of skin
that made up the face of country,
of the many films from the National Film Board.

A match box was ten cents;
a passerby gave her a dime
as she stood in the gutter,
and she collected them in her apron.

Emily Isaacson

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