The fire waits with tiger paws
on silent haunches by the hill,
then mounts the rock with clinging claws,
and contemplates the moment it will
pounce—on sagebrush dry as bones,
under a ghostly quiet moon,
slink through tinder, stalking homes,
and spring atop a shingled roof.
In blazing orange black white cape
it roars at scorching desert sky,
dives on prey, devours the take,
smoldering embers in its eye.
We scan the canyons, fear the sight
of fire—the tiger in the night.
At once transcendent and accessible, Sally Sandler’s writing gives voice to her generation of Baby Boomers and their elders. She illuminates their shared concerns over the passage of time and fading idealism, the death of parents, and loss of the environment while maintaining hope for wisdom yet to come. Sandler writes in classic forms to honor poetry’s roots while addressing contemporary issues. She is a graduate of the University of Michigan and lives in San Diego, California.