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Michael R Burch Apr 2020
The Shape of Mourning
by Michael R. Burch

The shape of mourning
is an oiled creel
shining with unuse,

the bolt of cold steel
on a locker
shielding memory,

the monthly penance
of flowers,
the annual wake,

the face in the photograph
no longer dissolving under scrutiny,
becoming a keepsake,

the useless mower
lying forgotten
in weeds,

rings and crosses and
all the paraphernalia
the soul no longer needs.

Keywords/Tags: shape, mourning, bolt, steel, locker, memory, memories, penance, wake, keepsake, memento, rings, crosses, paraphernalia
Michael R Burch Mar 2020
The Locker
by Michael R. Burch

All the dull hollow clamor has died
and what was contained,
removed,

reproved
adulation or sentiment,
left with the pungent darkness

as remembered as the sudden light.

Originally published by The Raintown Review

Keywords/Tags: Sports, locker, lockerroom, clamor, adulation, acclaim, applause, sentiment, darkness, light, retirement, athlete, team, trophy, award, acclamation



Tremble
by Michael R. Burch

Her predatory eye,
the single feral iris,
scans.

Her raptor beak,
all jagged sharp-edged ******,
juts.

Her hard talon,
clenched in pinched expectation,
waits.

Her clipped wings,
preened against reality,
tremble.

Published by The Lyric, Verses Magazine, Romantics Quarterly, Journeys, The Raintown Review, Poetic Ponderings, Poem Kingdom, The Fabric of a Vision, NPAC—Net Poetry and Art Competition, Poet’s Haven, Listening To The Birth Of Crystals (Anthology), Poetry Renewal, Inspirational Stories, Poetry Life & Times, MahMag (Iranian/Farsi), The Eclectic Muse

Keywords/Tags: Tremble, predator, raptor, hawk, eagle, falcon, talon, beak, wing, preen, preened, preening



Ordinary Love
by Michael R. Burch

Indescribable—our love—and still we say
with eyes averted, turning out the light,
"I love you," in the ordinary way

and tug the coverlet where once we lay,
all suntanned limbs entangled, shivering, white ...
indescribably in love. Or so we say.

Your hair's blonde thicket now is tangle-gray;
you turn your back; you murmur to the night,
"I love you," in the ordinary way.

Beneath the sheets our hands and feet would stray
to warm ourselves. We do not touch despite
a love so indescribable. We say

we're older now, that "love" has had its day.
But that which Love once countenanced, delight,
still makes you indescribable. I say,
"I love you," in the ordinary way.

Winner of the 2001 Algernon Charles Swinburne poetry contest; published by The Lyric, Romantics Quarterly, Mandrake Poetry Review, Carnelian, Poem Kingdom, Net Poetry and Art Competition, Famous Poets and Poems, FreeXpression, PW Review, Poetic Voices, Poetry Renewal and Poetry Life & Times
Anya Jan 2020
And who
are you
to wonder why
The seas and suns
may never die
And who
are you
to ask and beg
To want and pry
upon one leg
And who
are you
to love the sick
The weak and meek
who all die quick
And who
are you
to see the world
The bane you cried
and rock you hurled
And who
are you
to mend what broke
With hands of bone
and grey torn cloak
And who
are you
to take my life
My love, my praise,
my distanced strife
And who
are you
to heed cold breath
To leave your form
with name of Death
You
are soon
to greet me there
Beneath the walk
of Davy’s lair
We as humans,
Always have the need to express ourselves.
So do I.
Living this lie,
Had to get it out.
Could have expected.
Maybe,
I shouldn't have put that paper in your locker.
A stream of strawberry argot
and swift her auburn hair
let her shoal uptick in sluice
only a cheeseburger made grace
as her mamilla bare her cheek in crest there
if the goat made milk for perfect cheese
where she must have peas too
that keep her neat and trim
and with her dessert of ice cream
when she'll delight in luxury bob again.
Dream Fisher Mar 2017
I remember all those terribly awkward years
In a time capsule that dropped me right here.
I'd stay up with an unplugged microphone
Singing some songs about being alone
Writing so many poems of being unknown
How everyone looked so perfect,
They had a plan that seemed perfect,
They weren't like me, they weren't like you.
Masks of perfection that made me feel less than you
Questioning all of the life we've been through

I had a combination to a lock I still know
Even if it's to a door, now unknown
Down the hall you can find me, number 345
studying chapters in books on how to feel alive
Then graduate, jumping off that high dive
And we splash, knowing nothing
Praying we don't drown
Sick from the vertigo of a planet spinning us around.

Everyone looked so perfect,
They had a plan that seemed perfect
Just like me, just like you
With a mask having each the other fooled
Questioning how they made it through
I'm so perfect.
You're so perfect too.
My plan is, I haven't got a clue.

— The End —