Orange County is Burning

Orange County is burning


maybe i’ll go to Africa,

the wild savannah sounds enticing

maybe i’ll see giraffe and hippos and

learn tribal dancing, maybe i’ll trek

the nile and find a hidden treasure

beneath murky riverbeds, wearing

a jerkin of faded crocodile skin

maybe i’ll let you in


maybe i’ll head to China,  find

terracotta warriors under a vast

cool labyrinth made by pampered

troubled emperors, thousands of

years ago, or search Tibet for relics

haul you out of hazy opium dens

once i let you in


maybe i’ll go to Scandinavian fjords

ice floes lock up harbors, once

a polar bear drifting in tiny,

an iceberg, we’ll shoot elephant

guns, and sweat out the bad press,

Greenland can come get their bear,

once i let you in


maybe Patagonia, the Southern tip of

the world, angry, happy, together,

wide,  Argentine water

falls  when i think of either

of us, our love as brutal, ugly, dirty,

shameful, unkind or full of sin,

i won’t let that in


maybe you’ll be your true self now,

Orange County blazing, wild, afire,

orange like halloween gourds, rotten sneers

after a holiday, pumpkin faces withering

dithering in fear, but not us anymore,

cool dark park, you’ll pierce me low and high

Andes mountains pierce the sky, not skin,

maybe it’s not a sin,

maybe i’ll let you in

Blaze Bernstein was killed by a former classmate. Authorities are prosecuting it as an anti-Semitic, homophobic hate crime.

Click here to make a donation in Blaze’s name to Lambda Legal Defense Fund.

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