'The fire artist' by Brenda Cook

When I create a piece of art

I let myself go

and allow myself to be

completely me.


When I exhibit my work,

it’s like jumping into a fire.

I have to be prepared to feel the heat,

To even get a little scorched,

but never destroyed.

I have to know when to get out of the fire

and it’s good to have friends

who can help me

and rub the calamine lotion

of soothing words

into my wounds.


Sometimes people aren’t

going to understand my work

Maybe they haven’t taken

the chance themselves.

Maybe they are envious

at seeing how bright I am.

Maybe they are scared

that they will get stuck.

Maybe they are alone.

Maybe they are afraid of fire

or maybe it’s just not their taste.


They can have their opinion,

I respect that,

So long as they are soft

enough to care.


All I have to be

is strong

in my beliefs.