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i d o n t k n o w h e r
Please for courage
And wisdom about what to do

And discussion with Q.
How is everyone?

I've recently returned from a gap in posting, hope everyone is well in this new crazy World!

💜
I could never ride a bike,
Cause I could never maintain my balance on it.
My dad told my mum never to tell me to make tea,
For I would spill the milk, put too much in tea or leave it on the stove till it dried.
I never learned to light a primus (kerosene stove),
For if I did my mum would tell me to heat food .
After marriage I learned to drive a car,
But I never drove one,
For my mind was so full of things that I would forget to switch off the engine,
My husband thought a driver was better for me.
Spring rolls are my favourite snacks,
But, I don't know how to fold them,
So I got an idea,
It's not  the shape that matters,
It's the taste that counts,
So I fill them in samoosa pastry ,
And have samoosa spring rolls.
15/10/2020
those whom we did not defend
today are the ones who attack
no matter how much we pretend
the pendulum always swings back
At least
That is
What I say
So you
Do not
Have to
Worry.
He
Broke my wings
So I couldn’t

Fly

So I stole his soul
So he couldn’t

Die
Ignorance in law will cost you,
Ignorance in religion is a bliss.
19/9/2020
Poems about the Coronavirus


yet another iffy coronavirus haiku #1
by michael r. burch

plagued by the Plague
i plague the goldfish
with my verse



yet another iffy coronavirus haiku #2
by michael r. burch

sunflowers
hang their heads
embarrassed by their coronas

I wrote this poem after having a sunflower arrangement delivered to my mother, who is in an assisted living center and can’t have visitors due to the pandemic. This a poem about living with the fear, uncertainty, isolation, loneliness, alienation and depression created by the pandemic.



homework: yet another iffy coronavirus haiku #3
by Michael R. Burch

dim bulb overhead,
my silent companion:
still imitating the noonday sun?



yet another iffy coronavirus haiku #4
by Michael R. Burch

Spring fling―
children string flowers
into their face masks



New World Order (last in a series and perhaps of a species)
by Michael R. Burch

The days of the dandelions dawn ...
soon man will be gone:
fertilizer.



Spring has come:
the nameless hill
lies shrouded in mist
― Matsuo Basho, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch



Oh, fallen camellias,
if I were you,
I'd leap into the torrent!
― Takaha Shugyo, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch



Grasses wilt:
the braking locomotive
grinds to a halt
― Yamaguchi Seishi, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch



Come, investigate loneliness!
a solitary leaf
clings to the Kiri tree
― Matsuo Basho, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch



Whistle on, twilight whippoorwill,
solemn evangelist
of loneliness
― Matsuo Basho, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch


An empty road
lonelier than abandonment:
this autumn evening
― Matsuo Basho, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch



Winter drawing near:
my neighbor,
how does he fare?
― Matsuo Basho, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch


Let us arrange
these lovely flowers in the bowl
since there's no rice
― Matsuo Basho, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch


Death
stood at the end of the hall
in the long shadows
― Watanabe Hakusen, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch



Tonight I saw
how the peony crumples
in the fire's embers
― Katoh Shuhson, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch



The new calendar!:
as if tomorrow
is assured ...
― Inahata Teiko, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch



A kite floats
at the same place in the sky
where yesterday it floated ...
― Buson Yosa, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch



Our life here on earth:
to what shall we compare it?
It is not like a rowboat
departing at daybreak,
leaving no trace of us in its wake?
― Takaha Shugyo, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch



This World's Joy
(anonymous Middle English lyric, circa early 14th century AD)
loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch

Winter awakens all my care
as leafless trees grow bare.
For now my sighs are fraught
whenever it enters my thought:
regarding this world's joy,
how everything comes to naught.



Fowles in the Frith
(anonymous Middle English lyric, circa 13th-14th century AD)
loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch

The fowls in the forest,
the fishes in the flood
and I must go mad:
such sorrow I've had
for beasts of bone and blood!



Ech day me comëth tydinges thre
(anonymous Middle English lyric, circa the 13th to 14th century AD)
loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch

Each day I’m plagued by three doles,
These gargantuan weights on my soul:
First, that I must somehow exit this fen.
Second, because I cannot know when.
And yet it’s the third that torments me so,
Because I don't know where the hell I will go!



You Were My Death
by Paul Celan
loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch

You were my death;
I could hold you
when everything abandoned me―
even breath.



Epitaph for a Little Child Lost
by Michael R. Burch

I lived as best I could, and then I died.
Be careful where you step: the grave is wide.



Not Saying the World Revolves Around You, But ...
by Michael R. Burch

The day’s eyes were blue
until you appeared
and they wept at your beauty.




Imperfect Perfection
by Michael R. Burch

You’re too perfect for words―
a problem for a poet.



Stormfront
by Michael R. Burch

Our distance is frightening:
a distance like the abyss between heaven and earth
interrupted by bizarre and terrible lightning.



Splintering

An unbending tree
breaks easily.
―Lao Tzu, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch



Autumn Conundrum
by by Michael R. Burch

It's not that every leaf must finally fall,
it's just that we can never catch them all.



Laughter’s Cry
by Michael R. Burch

Because life is a mystery, we laugh
and do not know the half.

Because death is a mystery, we cry
when one is gone, our numbering thrown awry.



Childless
by Michael R. Burch

How can she bear her grief?
Mightier than Atlas, she shoulders the weight
of one fallen star.



I Pray Tonight
by Michael R. Burch

I pray tonight
the starry light
might
surround you.

I pray
by day
that, come what may,
no dark thing confound you.

I pray ere the morrow
an end to your sorrow.
May angels' white chorales
sing, and astound you.



For a Little Child Lost, with Butterflies
by Michael R. Burch

Where does the butterfly go
when lightning rails, when thunder howls,
when hailstones scream, when winter scowls,
when storms compound dark frosts with snow?
Where does the butterfly go?

Where does the rose hide its bloom
when night descends oblique and chill
beyond the capacity of moonlight to fill?
When the only relief's a banked fire's glow,
where does the butterfly go?

And where shall the spirit flee
when life is harsh, too harsh to face,
and hope is lost without a trace?
Oh, when the light of life runs low,
where does the butterfly go?

Please tell me, dear child;
lead, oh, and I'll follow,
for surely, my Angel, you know ...



Neglect
by Michael R. Burch

What good are your tears?
They will not spare the dying their anguish.
What good is your concern
to a child sick of living, waiting to perish?

What good, the warm benevolence of tears
without action?
What help, the eloquence of prayers,
or a pleasant benediction?

Before this day is gone,
how many more will die
with bellies swollen, wasted limbs,
and eyes too parched to cry?

I fear for our souls
as I hear the faint lament
of their souls departing ...
mournful, and distant.

How pitiful our "effort,"
yet how fatal its effect.
If they died, then surely we killed them,
if only with neglect.



The Octopi Jars
by Michael R. Burch

Long-vacant eyes
now lodged in clear glass,
a-swim with pale arms
as delicate as angels'...

you are beyond all hope
of salvage now...
and yet I would pause,
no fear!,
to once touch
your arcane beaks...

I, more alien than you
to this imprismed world,
notice, most of all,
the scratches on the inside surfaces
of your hermetic cells ...

and I remember documentaries
of albino Houdinis
slipping like wraiths
over the walls of shipboard aquariums,
slipping down decks'
brine-lubricated planks,
spilling jubilantly into the dark sea,
parachuting through clouds of pallid ammonia...

and I know now in life you were unlike me:
your imprisonment was never voluntary.



we did not Dye in vain!
by Michael R. Burch

from “songs of the sea snails”

though i’m just a slimy crawler,
my lineage is proud:
my forebears gave their lives
(oh, let the trumps blare loud!)
so purple-mantled Royals
might stand out in a crowd.

i salute you, fellow loyals,
who labor without scruple
as your incomes fall
while deficits quadruple
to swaddle unjust Lords
in bright imperial purple!

Notes: In ancient times the purple dye produced from the secretions of purpura mollusks (sea snails) was known as “Tyrian purple,” “royal purple” and “imperial purple.” It was greatly prized in antiquity, and was very expensive according to the historian Theopompus: “Purple for dyes fetched its weight in silver at Colophon.” Thus, purple-dyed fabrics became status symbols, and laws often prevented commoners from possessing them. The production of Tyrian purple was tightly controlled in Byzantium, where the imperial court restricted its use to the coloring of imperial silks. A child born to the reigning emperor was literally porphyrogenitos ("born to the purple") because the imperial birthing apartment was walled in porphyry, a purple-hued rock, and draped with purple silks. Royal babies were swaddled in purple; we know this because the iconodules, who disagreed with the emperor Constantine about the veneration of images, accused him of defecating on his imperial purple swaddling clothes!



Update of "A Litany in Time of Plague"
by Michael R. Burch

THE PLAGUE has come again
To darken lives of men
and women, girls and boys;
Death proves their bodies toys
Too frail to even cry.
I am sick, I must die.
Lord, have mercy on us!

Tycoons, what use is wealth?
You cannot buy good health!
Physicians cannot heal
Themselves, to Death must kneel.
Nuns’ prayers mount to the sky.
I am sick, I must die.
Lord, have mercy on us!

Beauty’s brightest flower?
Devoured in an hour.
Kings, Queens and Presidents
Are fearful residents
Of manors boarded high.
I am sick, I must die.
Lord, have mercy on us!

We have no means to save
Our children from the grave.
Though cure-alls line our shelves,
We cannot save ourselves.
"Come, come!" the sad bells cry.
I am sick, I must die.
Lord, have mercy on us!

NOTE: This poem is meant to capture the understandable fear and dismay the Plague caused in the Middle Ages, and which the coronavirus has caused in the 21st century. We are better equipped to deal with this modern plague, thanks to advances in science, medicine and sanitation. We do not have to succumb to fear, but it would be wise to have a healthy respect for the nasty bug and heed the advice of medical experts.―MRB

Keywords/Tags: coronavirus, pandemic, COVID-19, plague, illness, death, fear, pain, rhyme, uncertainty, isolation, loneliness, alienation, depression, masks, social, distance, distancing, mrbcorona, mrbplague
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