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Marmaelady May 2020
Like any other Saturday, she picks up a book
Lies on the couch, starts reading her favourite lines
With her adventure-ready position
Gazillion particles await her discovery

In between familiar blocks of text
She traces white spaces with her fingers
To capture a long-lost story in the universe
Her heart always feared to return to

Its sturdy spine stands still between her fingers
Yesterday’s traces of coffee and tears remain
The folded edges hastily placed to remember
As a stray bookmark falls down like a sparrow

Treading its story chapter by chapter
There's a line she keeps coming back to
“Hope,” it said, “can bring you places”
She tucks it in her pocket full of favourite lines

She thinks of outside
Where the withering whispers no longer matter
Inked and paper-bound, she begins to make sense of
A romantic story between a girl and her book

The pages calmly gaze at her
As she finds herself at the last fold — a blank canvass
With a smile, she takes a quill and braces herself
To finish the —
Made recent revisions to a poem I made months ago for lit class. This is supposed to describe me. Proceed with caution bwahaha.

(Note: I was never able to write a happy poem for a long time, this is the first ever happy poem I wrote in two years.)
Michael R Burch May 2020
NOVELTIES
by Thomas Campion
loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch

Booksellers laud authors for novel editions
as pimps praise their ****** for exotic positions.

This is my translation of a Latin epigram by the English poet Thomas Campion. In Campion’s era some English poets continued to write poems in Latin and/or Greek. For instance, John Milton and Andrew Marvell wrote poems in Latin, while Shakespeare was criticized by Ben Jonson, if I remember things correctly, for having “little” Greek and Latin.

Not being “versed” in the senior languages was seen as a deficiency in literary circles back then. Shakespeare was called an “upstart crow” for daring to write “litter-chure” without a proper university degree. How could he properly quote the ancients if he couldn’t read them in their original languages? The Bard of Avon was doomed to failure and obscurity … or perhaps not, since the English language was finally in vogue in England (where for centuries English kings had been unable to read, write or even speak the mother tongue, preferring French, Latin and Greek).

My title is a bit of a pun, because novels were new to the world when they first arrived, and were thus considered by the literary elites to be “novelties” not on par with more serious verse plays. Some of the more popular early novels were “subversive” (pardon the pun) explorations of ****** naughtiness, through characters like Tom Jones, Moll Flanders, et al.

Campion probably didn’t have such campy (enough with the puns, already!) novels in mind when he wrote his epigram, since the more titillating (cease! desist!) ones had yet to arrive. But perhaps he would prove to be a “profit” (I’m udderly hopeless!).

Keywords/Tags: Campion, Latin, translation, epigram, novels, novelties, booksellers, publishers, authors, pimps, ******, prostitutes, prostitution, exotic, positions
rose May 2020
a book of beauty
simple and sweet with meaning
hidden within words
haiku no. 3
Michael R Burch Mar 2020
Novelties
by Thomas Campion
loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch

Booksellers laud authors for novel editions
as pimps praise their ****** for exotic positions.

*

Original Latin text:

IN LIBRARIOS
by Thomas Campion

Impressionum plurium librum laudat
Librarius; scortum nec non minus leno.

Keywords/Tags: Campion, Latin, translation, epigram, novels, novelties, booksellers, publishers, authors, pimps, ******, prostitutes, prostitution, exotic, positions, quote, quotation, saying, witticism, bon mot
lua Nov 2019
she's made of words
of unspoken poetry
a series of novels in the making
and skin littered in love letters

each time she whispers in my ear
i hear lyrics and verses of unsung songs
a melody so sweet
sweeter than wine
and candy combined

each letter she strings together
looks like constellations across the evening
and every syllable she utters blows up in sparks
like lightning in the night sky

yes, she may be hard to read
but she's fun to analyse
how one can be so complex
so beautiful
at the same time

truly
there is no one like her
someone who can speak her own mind
she's unique, fantastical
one of a kind.
Paige Aug 2019
I want to write the kind of book you recommend to people you love, the kind of book that you spend days and nights and countless hours rereading and scribbling in and folding down pages. I want the spines of these books to wither and wear with how greatly it is loved, I want the pages to smell like coffee and tears and perfume from that time you left it open in your backpack. I want my books to be cherished and studied and wondered about, to speak to generations and to mean something. I want people to know it, to quote it, to hold it dear. I want people to take inspiration from it and use it as a tool, to love better, to write again, to find their place. I want my imagery to be a home for you, to hold you in its arms and cradle you until you feel peace. I want my stories to take you on journeys you rarely want to return from, to open your mind to galaxies and souls and the eyes of the old and young, I want them to breathe life into you and help you grow. When I dream of writing, I picture café tables and mug stains on soft wood, I picture thick rimmed glasses and autumn days or summer nights. I think of floor boards and tall grasses and heavy trees with thick waxy leaves rustling with the wind. I think of faded titles, cozy back seats, and a flannel blanket that smells like camp fire and nighttime. I want to publish books that feel like those moments, that speak to people so broken they can't breathe, so happy they can't speak, or so lost that a compass couldn't show them how to look for the north star. I want to write for people with tears in their eyes or goosebumps on their skin, the ones who laugh with their whole heart, smile with their whole faces, or cry like they've never known how to do anything else. I want to strike a chord in them, to touch souls and memories and traumas, I want to find their roots, to speak to them on levels they didn't know they had, to connect and understand and teach and learn. I want to interact. I have been broken and jealous and defeated, I have been sad, and scared, and alone. I have been so happy that I could burst and so devastated that I thought I might lose myself completely. I've changed so many times and been reborn over and over, I've felt the overwhelming grace of forgiveness and the strong current of love, I've felt blind rage and justified anger, I've felt curiosity and confusion and adoration... I've felt so much for so long that I long to share it with people. I long to live and be alive for all of the moments that I wished I wasn't, I long to chase my hopes and dreams and remind those who will listen that it is never too late, that love is alive and that the world is capable... so capable. I want to inspire them to look at their hands and see greatness, to look at the sky and see brilliance, to look at their goals and see possibility. I don't want to write something that gets swept under the rug like dust or old toys, I want my words to matter to someone, to help someone, to inspire belief, or encourage conviction, commitment, or change. I want people to hear my voice and feel in their soul that they are not alone, that there is hope and there are genuine hearts in the world. I want them to see and have faith that these things exist, that good is powerful and it is not limited to one or two things but a vast ocean of things. I want my words to be a reflection of my life and I want my life to mean something, to imprint itself on those around me and be an example of how to love. I want to love so recklessly and unabashedly that it stuns you, that it makes you want to love too. I want to love and be loved with the intensity of a thousand moons over a million oceans, willing them to rise and break against the shore. I want to be unmoved and unchanged by bitterness or hatred and I want my work to reflect that, to bring that desire to life in anyone who reads it. I want to change the world one person at a time and create a time and place where people love and do good unconditionally, were they see those who need help and help them, where they remember that it's okay to be selfish sometimes and it's okay to fight for their own happiness, I want to show people that it's alright to love and enjoy anything and everything, that they should love and enjoy more, that they should share those experiences and open their hearts over and over again because to love after being broken is an indescribable feeling, a vibrating and pulsing thing that surges through you like lighting. I want people to feel that, to spark joy in each other, and to read again. I want people to read my work and be able to say that it moved them. That it did something, anything, to their heart or soul or perception, that it made them weep or laugh or show even a moment of kindness to anyone. I want to open hearts to the idea that love does not have to be reciprocated to be felt, that love is an all encompassing thing and it is okay to feel it. That the pain or worries of love can be tools of growing and learning and loving more. Love is more than romance and sweet words in the ear of someone you fancy, love is an undeniable force, a beautiful connection between us all if only we'd allow ourselves to feel it. To understand it and master it. I want that to be my message even if I never live to see it.
Anya Oct 2018
From the moment
I could hear my grandfathers voice
Telling me legends and fables from his religion

To the time
My dad would
Make up tales
Of a pair of brothers
Just to get me to sit still
When my parents in a rare moment,
didn’t have
A book readily available

From the moment I was able
To hold a novel and breeze thought
Fluently with ease
After my parent’s ardorous task
Of getting me to practice

The days when my
Mind spent less time in the real
World and more time captivated
By those experiencing what I had not
But now, though their words, had

To today
Where my almost every
Free waking moment is spent
Either absorbing words
Of some romantic
Or fantastical story
Or,
Writing.
...
So basically...

Books
Stories
Novels
Words
...
This poem conveys it all
I don’t even have to say
What an integral part
Of me
They
Are
Anya Sep 2018
In preschool it was drawing
In elementary school it was reading
In seventh grade it was anime
In eighth grade it was Manga
In freshman year it was Asian light novels
Now,
It’s poetry
...
What will it be next???
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