Maybe it all comes down
to the difference between noun
and past participle,
when the human heart stops
wanting to be loved
and starts wanting to be love –
the flame itself, the origin and receptacle.
So much mischief in that one consonant
like the hair’s breadth of Buddhism
or the difference in capitalization – self v. Self
or Saint Francis
barefoot in the snow,
the flame feeding upon everything
until there is only flame, only love.
O child of God, prod and stoke the crumbling fire
of your bitter, hard, tenacious self.