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by Michael R. Burch

for Jeremy Michael Burch

Every day we whittle away at the essential solidity of him,
and every day a new sharp feature emerges:
a feature we’ll spend creative years: planing, smoothing, refining,

trying to find some new Archaic Torso of Apollo, or Thinker . . .

And if each new day a little of the boisterous air of youth is deflated
in him, if the hours of small pleasures spent chasing daffodils
in the outfield as the singles become doubles, become triples,
become unconscionable errors, become victories lost,

become lives wasted beyond all possible hope of repair . . .

if what he was becomes increasingly vague—like a white balloon careening
into clouds; like a child striding away aggressively toward manhood,
hitching an impressive rucksack over sagging, sloping shoulders,
shifting its vaudevillian burden back and forth,

then pausing to look back at us with an almost comical longing . . .

if what he wants is only to be held a little longer against a forgiving *****;
to chase after daffodils in the outfield regardless of scores;
to sail away like a balloon
on a firm string, always sure to return when the line tautens,

till he looks down upon us from some removed height we cannot quite see,

bursting into tears over us:
what, then, of our aspirations for him, if he cannot breathe,
cannot rise enough to contemplate the earth with his own vision,
unencumbered, but never untethered, forsaken . . .

cannot grow brightly, steadily, into himself—flying beyond us?

Keywords/Tags: child, childhood, boy, son, growing up, maturation, puberty, adulthood, manhood, flight, flying, soaring
Ashutosh Mar 21
i was bron being told a man is somebody who hides his countenance adeptly
But what exactly defines a man ?
Is it the hair on the cheeks ?
the depth of our wallets ?
or is it the strength of our arms ?
we are taught how not to express our feelings
and how it makes us look weak
so hiding emotions defines a man ?
or is it our aloofness ?
or is man hood just desperation
born of the isolation
of our indoctrination
For the man who has a thirty minute skin routine, you look great!

For the man who likes to be suited and booted, you look dapper!

For the man who meditated for an hour a day, you are zen!

For the man who cried three times last week, you are strong!

For the man who lifts weights every day, you look ****!

For the man who is struggling to tell his family about his boyfriend, you are loved!

For the man who lives in fear of domestic abuse, you are not alone!

For the man who craves cuddles and affection, you will find it!

Manliness is a concept that is misappropriated,
There is a cliche that plagues you all,
But being proud of who you are,
Is what makes you manly,
Stand tall!
camps Jan 29
you watch movies set in new york in the nineties
and city life seems so different then than it is now they
capture the quintessential city culture he wonders out
loud the people in the café continue with their meals no one
was listening the previous statement is false and not
particularly fair to the man next to him who did indeed
hear him i may be old but i'm still a man the gentleman
says and he heard but the words echoed in his mind as
he now pondered whether stocking up on band-aids
manifests the need to use them

the hairless patch on his face is quite large but he's
perfectly accustomed to it as it is his hairless patch on his
face so much so that every once in a while he looks in the
mirror and is reminded that in theory and in agreement with
the way beards work hair should be growing where there is
none and suddenly he becomes aware that his beard is not as beards go and his self-induced cognitive dissonance only goes away when he remembers that he's spent literally hours of his life brushing
his teeth and quite aggressively at that

i too am a man
man, what?
Desire Jul 2019
Love isnt perfect meeting perfect.
Its a covenant taken in hand: promising
to push through floods and flaws
despite our own imperfections...
We're all human, knowing
darkness and what its like to be broken.
Let love be your light, mending your
broken p i e c e s...
I'm an imperfect man,
but I'm a man to say the least,
and I will continue to push so that
love may continue to increase‼️
Don Bouchard Jun 2019
This, the generation
Of the Trampling Bull,
The trodding of the Crop,
The headlong raging run,
With never any stop.

Having pulled the stakes,
Dragging tethers;
Pawing unchecked,
Throwing clods above his withers;

Fence posts falling,
The corners cave.

Town boys chase him
With sticks,
Unable to check or to drive
His rampant run,
O'er suffering fields.

Where are the men
Who'll come to force him,
Back into civility?

Where are the men?
Make of it what you will. I woke at 2:00 with this vivid dream....
Darryl M May 2019
Why is it that when a man opens up, trouble follows?
Can’t love be the blankets I sleep in?
Can’t you be the heat in snowy days?
Can’t I fall in love with you?
The Real you.
Yes, your body is marvellous and all,
But I’m in love with You.
I’m in love with your Soul.
Do I see it?
But I feel you deeply in mine.
This is no longer a thing of the heart,
Soul bound, we are.
Love Locked, I am.
Loved always, you are.
Mateo Apr 2019
I once wrote words on paper,
Words that flowed from my soul.
I once had a pen full of ink,
Which dripped dreams upon my sheet.
I once fell asleep in my youth,
Then I awoke as a man.
Anthony Mayfield Mar 2019
A man is a man
Is a man
He stands tall
With strong shoes
And blue jeans
And red wings
He does not strut
He owns the block
With his talk and walk

A man is a man
He understands
To be gruff is to be loved
To be aloof is to be good
Muscles to waste away
And away
And away

A man
Broke the rule
A man
Choked me through
Pulled me too close
Transparent as ghosts
An unyielding lust

To the horrors of man
Stare into fear
Such horrid leer

But please
Take and steal and scare and sing
Or better yet his radio sang

Such a long quiet sorrowful manly drive
For those who wish to thrive

Be a man?
Take a stand

For a man is a man is a man is

You broke my life
Left me as bile
But I'm still alive
With vision for miles
I see it clearly now
I see that a man is a man is a man
I understand
You're sad
I’ve been questioning what it is to be manly vs what it is to be human vs what it is to even be alive. A man isn't measured by the power of his centerpiece, if you will. A man is measured by his ability to respect boundaries and not force himself, be it emotionally or physically, upon others. That right there is a man. Manhood is respect.
Benedict Jan 2019
i can't help but look
as the man you thought i was dies
and the person i really am
crawls into bed beside you
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