House On Fire


We get on like a house on fire.
The blaze is cool,
and the engines are howling towards it.

A knot of spectators
has been neatly arranged
to applaud the unloading of hose.

The fire we get on like is a house.
It is full of detritus,
and as willing as any tinder.

Friends and relatives
have formed in a puzzle
to describe the triangular flames.

Like a house, to get on, we are a fire.
The price of the cinders
is the business of experts in arson.

Volunteer soldiers
are marching in nice formation
to mimic the pyrotechnics.

We are fire. We are house. I like you.
Witness combustion,
and follow the long thin fuse.

We kiss
in the sunlit porch
of the house which awaits us.

From Love Poems

House On Fire