The Mighty Viking

Conquering those things we must, one story at a time


This dying campfire huddles before me in front of my stool and beneath my poker, here in this late night hour. It burns a deep, deep red, its chest expanding and contracting erratically across the unmoving chunks of wood it has possessed for these last few hours. In this final stage of its life, it is larger than hours ago when it cooked our dinner. It now occupies my very soul, burning and scorching every other thought from me.

Drawing me in across the hours, it has faded from rampant yellow flames into subdued orange, slowly cooking down to a stately blue. The few flames remaining merely whisper now, just a ragged gasping flow of deep red color inside the coals of dead wood. The sticks and marshmallows, my night’s sacred meditation, is now done. Its final weakness, this melancholy shadow of the strength and fury that made me step back from the eager flames of its youth, has turned out to be its greatest strength, a ragged whisper that has the power to change me like no conquering shout could ever do.

I sparked this fire with a match just a few short hours ago, as I stood feeling the chill of the evening woods. It now sparks a fire within me with its final breath, and that fire will burn in me for days, or maybe weeks, until again I stand in the woods, eagerly anticipating another evening chill, waiting to meet my familiar friend again, waiting to have this quiet, intimate sacred dance again, and for my mind to be kindled again.



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