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Excerpts from “Travels with Einstein”
by Michael R. Burch

for Trump

I went to Berlin to learn wisdom
from Adolph. The wild spittle flew
as he screamed at me, with great conviction:
“Please despise me! I look like a Jew!”

So I flew off to ’Nam to learn wisdom
from tall Yankees who cursed “yellow” foes.
“If we lose this small square,” they informed me,
earth’s nations will fall, dominoes!”

I then sat at Christ’s feet to learn wisdom,
but his Book, from its genesis to close,
said: “Men can enslave their own brothers!”
(I soon noticed he lacked any clothes.)

So I traveled to bright Tel Aviv
where great scholars with lofty IQs
informed me that (since I’m an Arab)
I’m unfit to lick dirt from their shoes.

At last, done with learning, I stumbled
to a well where the waters seemed sweet:
the mirage of American “justice.”
There I wept a real sea, in defeat.

Originally published by Café Dissensus

Keywords/Tags: Einstein, Adolph, ******, Berlin, Jew, Jews, Arab, Arabs, Palestinian, Palestinians, Vietnam, Vietnamese, American, Americans, Yankees, Domino, Theory, Dominoes, Jesus, Christ, Bible, Christian, Christianity, Slave, Slaves, Slavery, Israel, Jerusalem, Tel Aviv
First they came for the Muslims
by Michael R. Burch

after Martin Niemoller

First they came for the Muslims
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Muslim.

Then they came for the homosexuals
and I did not speak out
because I was not a homosexual.

Then they came for the feminists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a feminist.

Now when will they come for me
because I was too busy and too apathetic
to defend my sisters and brothers?

"First they came for the Muslims" was published in Amnesty International’s "Words That Burn" anthology and is now being used as training material for budding human rights activists. My poem was inspired by and patterned after Martin Niemoller’s famous Holocaust poem. Niemoller, a German pastor, supported Adolph ****** in the early going, but ended up in a **** concentration camp and nearly lost his life. So his was a true poem based on his actual life experience. Keywords/Tags: Holocaust, genocide, apartheid, racism, intolerance, Jew, Jews, Muslim, Muslims, homosexuals, feminists, apathy, sisters, brothers, Islam, Islamic, God, religion, intolerance, race, racism, racist, discrimination, feminist, feminists, feminism, sexuality, gay, homosexual, homosexuals, LGBT, mrbmuslim



Epitaph for a Palestinian Child
by Michael R. Burch

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



I Pray Tonight
by Michael R. Burch

for the mothers and children of Gaza

I pray tonight
the starry light
might
surround you.

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

I pray ere tomorrow
an end to your sorrow.
May angels’ white chorales
sing, and astound you.



Such Tenderness
by Michael R. Burch

for the mothers of Gaza

There was, in your touch, such tenderness―as
only the dove on her mildest day has,
when she shelters downed fledglings beneath a warm wing
and coos to them softly, unable to sing.

What songs long forgotten occur to you now―
a babe at each breast? What terrible vow
ripped from your throat like the thunder that day
can never hold severing lightnings at bay?

Time taught you tenderness―time, oh, and love.
But love in the end is seldom enough ...
and time?―insufficient to life’s brief task.
I can only admire, unable to ask―

what is the source, whence comes the desire
of a woman to love as no God may require?



I, too, have a Dream ...
written by Michael R. Burch for the children of Gaza

I, too, have a dream ...
that one day Jews and Christians
will see me as I am:
a small child, lonely and afraid,
staring down the barrels of their big bazookas,
knowing I did nothing
to deserve their enmity.



My Nightmare ...
written by Michael R. Burch for the children of Gaza

I had a dream of Jesus!
Mama, his eyes were so kind!
But behind him I saw a billion Christians
hissing "You're nothing!," so blind.



For a Palestinian Child, with Butterflies
by Michael R. Burch

Where does the butterfly go ...
when lightning rails ...
when thunder howls ...
when hailstones scream ...
when winter scowls ...
when nights 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?

Published by Tucumcari Literary Review, Romantics Quarterly, Poetry Life & Times and Victorian Violet Press (where it was nominated for a “Best of the Net”), The Contributor (a Nashville homeless newspaper), Siasat (Pakistan), and set to music as a part of the song cycle “The Children of Gaza” which has been performed in various European venues by the Palestinian soprano Dima Bawab



Frail Envelope of Flesh
by Michael R. Burch

for the mothers and children of Gaza

Frail envelope of flesh,
lying cold on the surgeon’s table
with anguished eyes
like your mother’s eyes
and a heartbeat weak, unstable ...

Frail crucible of dust,
brief flower come to this―
your tiny hand
in your mother’s hand
for a last bewildered kiss ...

Brief mayfly of a child,
to live two artless years!
Now your mother’s lips
seal up your lips
from the Deluge of her tears ...

Published by The Lyric, Promosaik (Germany), Setu (India) and Poetry Life & Times; translated into Arabic by Nizar Sartawi and into Italian by Mario Rigli

Note: The phrase "frail envelope of flesh" was one of my first encounters with the power of poetry, although I read it in a superhero comic book as a young boy (I forget which one). More than thirty years later, the line kept popping into my head, so I wrote this poem. I have dedicated it to the mothers and children of Gaza, who know all too well how fragile life and human happiness can be. What can I say, but that I hope, dream, wish and pray that one day ruthless men will no longer have power over the lives and happiness of innocents? Women, children and babies are not “terrorists” so why are they being punished collectively for the “crime” of having been born “wrong”? How can the government of Israel practice systematic racism and apartheid, and how can the government of the United States fund and support such a barbaric system?



who, US?
by Michael R. Burch

jesus was born
a palestinian child
where there’s no Room
for the meek and the mild

... and in bethlehem still
to this day, lambs are born
to cries of “no Room!”
and Puritanical scorn ...

under Herod, Trump, Bibi
their fates are the same―
the slouching Beast mauls them
and WE have no shame:

“who’s to blame?”

(In the poem "US" means both the United States and "us" the people of the world, wherever we live. The name "jesus" is uncapitalized while "Room" is capitalized because it seems evangelical Christians are more concerned about land and not sharing it with the less fortunate, than the teachings of Jesus Christ. Also, Jesus and his parents were refugees for whom there was "no Room" to be found. What would Jesus think of Christian scorn for the less fortunate, one wonders? What would he think of people adopting his name for their religion, then voting for someone like Trump, as four out of five evangelical Christians did, according to exit polls?)



Excerpts from “Travels with Einstein”
by Michael R. Burch

I went to Berlin to learn wisdom
from Adolph. The wild spittle flew
as he screamed at me, with great conviction:
“Please despise me! I look like a Jew!”

So I flew off to ’Nam to learn wisdom
from tall Yankees who cursed “yellow” foes.
“If we lose this small square,” they informed me,
earth’s nations will fall, dominoes!”

I then sat at Christ’s feet to learn wisdom,
but his Book, from its genesis to close,
said: “Men can enslave their own brothers!”
(I soon noticed he lacked any clothes.)

So I traveled to bright Tel Aviv
where great scholars with lofty IQs
informed me that (since I’m an Arab)
I’m unfit to lick dirt from their shoes.  

At last, done with learning, I stumbled
to a well where the waters seemed sweet:
the mirage of American “justice.”
There I wept a real sea, in defeat.

Originally published by Café Dissensus



Starting from Scratch with Ol’ Scratch
by Michael R. Burch

for the Religious Right

Love, with a small, fatalistic sigh
went to the ovens. Please don’t bother to cry.
You could have saved her, but you were all *******
complaining about the Jews to Reichmeister Grupp.

Scratch that. You were born after World War II.
You had something more important to do:
while the children of the Nakba were perishing in Gaza
with the complicity of your government, you had a noble cause (a
religious tract against homosexual marriage
and various things gods and evangelists disparage.)

Jesus will grok you? Ah, yes, I’m quite sure
that your intentions were good and ineluctably pure.
After all, what the hell does he care about Palestinians?
Certainly, Christians were right about serfs, slaves and Indians.
Scratch that. You’re one of the Devil’s minions.
Tizzop Nov 2019
dear black folks i
want to be white

dear white folks i
want to be black

dear biracials i want to be
black and white
at the same time

(much love to my kids)

dear jews i
want to be a muslim

dear muslims i
want to be a jew

can you help me out
brother?

can you help me out
sister?

can you help me out
rabbi?

can you help me out
habibi?

i need someone
like you folks

who is aware of
DSR
Aaron LaLux Sep 2018
Was told we’re not supposed to call it The 3rd World anymore,
that the politically correct term is “Developing World”,
It’s not 1st and 2nd World,
it’s Developed and Developing world,

I thought,
what difference does it make,
the same disparities still exist,
regardless of if the names change the problems remain,

we’re quick to look down on a 3rd world mob boss,
because he executes a few troops to make a statement to say,
but who are we to judge if you ask me all humans are fckt up,
and at the end of the day nothing really matters anyways,

we’re all Lethargic Aggressively Passive Agitators,
we’d all rather get lost in an Instagram Timeline,
than get found in our Real Life Timeline,
where the Beast of Burden are disgusted as Beauties that are benign,

anyways whatever where am I I’m flying through the sky on an Air New Zealand flight,
watching a documentary about Spielberg,
his phenomenal rise in the film industry,
and how some critics pointed to his rise as the demise real cinematographic art,

but critics are critics and that’s just it,
they get paid to criticize,
when in fact most of us artists types would argue,
that everything is art every scene on screen and in real life,

only difference is with real life it feels like there’s no break time,
that everyone’s forgot their lines & there’s no script,
the camera is always rolling the director never yells cut,
and even when you get frustrated you can’t walk of the set and call it quits,

what the heck is this,
what kind of sick joke is someone playing,
I mean don’t get me wrong I’ve got a great life,
I’m not complaining at all I’m just saying,

this mind of ours has some dark places,
everyone scared of sacred water because of Jaws,
it sparked a fear that lead to the slaughter,
of the majestic prehistoric fish known as the shark,

and that’s just the tip of the iceberg with Spielberg,
think how many other ways he altered all our perceptions,
think about his films about aliens,
think about her portrayals of various villains,

either that or don’t think about it at all,
just turn on a screen and watch a show,
and try to seize the moments,
because most of us don’t realize the movie’s over until the credits begin to roll,

oh,
here we go,
another poem about nothing that we find important,
like life and disparities and re-programming of soul,

but what does it matter anyways,
if life is but a dream and we are lost at sea on a boat,
I mean we’re all gonna die at least in the physical sense,
and I don’t know if that’s true but that’s what I’ve been told,

then again I’ve been told a lot of things,
got me thinking that someone isn’t necessarily wise just because they’re old,
so I take all food for my soul with a grain of salt,
because something isn’t true just because it was told,

Was told we’re not supposed to call it The 3rd World anymore,
that the politically correct term is “Developing World”,
It’s not 1st and 2nd World,
it’s Developed and Developing world…

∆ LaLux ∆
Nat Lipstadt Feb 2015
this is a very important poem to me,
about me, and how Obama slurred my people. and never apologized

<•>

there are mornings when I wake up
in my nativity,
in my born/bred,
these struggling to be happy,
United States,
strangely hebrew-speaking,
Jamaican coffee
morning-thinking,
tallying up
what I am,
who I am,
commanded to be,
on this Earth

the labels that the
outward-looking apply,
the tags,
that you have caused
yourself to be defined,
been staked
to your claim,
in infamy and in fame,
that you have
by action and indeed,

have allow
to be presented
as entries on your
global entry passport,
with visas from the
lows and highs,
places where
your have sinned and saved,
all the acts accumulated,
and those,
in pain,
you have been a witness to

word titles that
tinge and suffuse,
summation of my presentation,
sampler of words
like
father, poet,
American,
even,
a for-real
community organizer,
and of course,
bien sûr,
a
Jew

the quality of all these life's papers,
which I grade myself,
I,
the harshest marker
of all

once a young man,
safely away in college,
under the fresh-air freedom of the
university's in loco parentis,
in the early years
spent quantifying oneself

nearly fifty years ago,
now he,
revealed and recalled
when
his college typed-letter,
lately uncovered amidst his,
recently passed mother's papers

"Don't know what kind of
Jew
I will be, but be assured,
that I will be a
Jew
all my life"

so here I am doing my post-sabbath,
top of the week,
right it down,
qualifying myself,
coffee enraged engaged,
a new Sunday tally

taking all my terms,
reordering,
re-prior-itizing,
what was prior, first,
is no longer

decades decay,
events sway,
simple words change me, stain me

nearing on five decades later,
when this
son of speakers,
son of humanists and 
son of
 writers,
son of proud
Jews
rewrites his list

today I write/substitute,
a new order,
a tag gladly taken,
a marker given,
some what in pride,
some in shame too,
first and foremost,
à la manière d'Lincoln
I am
of, by and for

"a bunch of folks in a deli"

proud member of them
that so identify,
for they are among those
that shall not perish from the Earth

those
happenstance-not,
bunch of folks in a deli,
I claim as
mine own,
as they would
have claimed me

no subtly professed,
a diminishment intended,
and now
an honorific taken,
Medal of Honor provoked and embraced,
proudly inscribed,
visible on my forehead,
in the black ink of mourning,
a Presidential Cain Citation,
a tattoo of letters,
not numbers,
now moves up to
head of the list,
I am
now and forever,
a member of that corps
(appreciate that double entendre)
I am
Je suis
JE JUIF

*"a bunch of folks in a deli"
Just google that phrase

Obama’s slur
Aaron LaLux Dec 2017
Abraham's Youth


I'm white,
and Jewish,
and American,
but I,
refuse to,
be scared again,

let's let the truth be our teacher,
for I don't want war either,

and they say Jews and Arabs,
have been fighting each other,
for thousands of years,
but we are all brothers,
we bleed the same blood,
share the same father,
we both want a future of peace,
for our daughters,

I doubt Abraham,
would've wanted it this way,
for his children,
to fight instead of play,

our Father,
would surely be upset,
if he was looking,
down from up there,
so I don't buy,
the propaganda they're selling,
for if true,
history is to be telling,
Jews and Arabs,
lived in harmony,
underneath,
the shade of olive trees,
In Jerusalem,
kids studied together,
good books,
academic endeavors,
for,
hundreds of years,
without,
hate or fear,
only,
love in our hearts,
until,
politics tore us apart…

In 1948,
the U.N. stepped in,
with their laws,
imperial rule and nuclear weapons,
divide and conquer,
Western Machiavellian,
tactics,
let me ask this,
is Damascas the axis,
where Abraham's *******,
practice black magic withcraft?

The fact is,
the Baptist,
the false profit priest,
praying to the beast,
left the light,
then mixed up the good book,
to make wrong seem right,
left to right,
they rewrote the Bible backwards,
they subtracted good,
and added bad words,
they say it's prayer,
but it's really evil practice,
fkcn sorcerer magicians,
rabbit in a hat tricks,
but instead of a rabbit,
they pull out a dove,
"Look,
we've capitalized off love!",
or at least,
the thought of it,
"here, buy lots of it!"
"Don't worry you'll be fine!"

I don't feel fine,
I feel like I'm,
losing touch,
with divine…

So I shout with my heart, W
here Is The LOVE!
Come here my Brothers,
give me a hug!
Put down the guns,
let us embrace,
let us pray together,
let us have some faith,

Isaac,
Ishmael,
we are one family,
let us,
bless us,
all of us actually,
let us,
break bread,
and have peace,
from the,
West Coast,
to The Middle East,
this is,
a New World,
in The Old City,
We've had,
enough war,
we need some peace,

As-Salaam Alaikum,
Wa-Alaikum Salaam,
Words of the Torah,
and the Koran,
Shalom,
Salaam,
open heart,
open palms,
from out of the dark ages,
we are the New Dawn,
rising above,
with hope,
and with love,
let there,
be peace,
let there,
be peace...

∆aron L∆ Lux ∆
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