After a Fire at a Jewelry Store

That he had gone unnoticed seemed miraculous.

How much longer
Could he poke among the ashes?

Where was that dream-sized jewel? His share.
Was it to remain imagined? One more hope
Soon to burst, its shards
Hollow as moonlight?

For that soot-covered man, better the hunt
Than to sit by the fountain and lunch;
Better to risk arrest
Than to lack.

Better yet, and easier, by night
To scoop coins from a fountain,
Taking what others had wished away.

But this was a singular chance.

Don’t we each harbor that greater end: a find
That can transform us?

So, more power to him! Let him pocket
His life-changing prize.


© Joseph Murphy 2017
Originally appeared in Loch Raven Review