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Snapshots by Michael R. Burch Here I scrawl extravagant rainbows. And there you go, skipping your way to school. And here we are, drifting apart like untethered balloons. Here I am, creating "art," chanting in shadows, pale as the crinoline moon, ignoring your face. There you go, in diaphanous lace, making another man’s heart swoon. Suddenly, unthinkably, here he is, taking my place. Published by Tucumcari Literary Review, Romantics Quarterly, Centrifugal Eye, Poetry Webring, Poetry Life & Times and The Eclectic Muse. Keywords/Tags: divorce, separation, parting, alienation, distance, love, marriage ### Distances by Michael R. Burch Moonbeams on water— the reflected light of a halcyon star now drowning in night ... So your memories are. Footprints on beaches now flooding with water; the small, broken ribcage of some primitive slaughter ... So near, yet so far. Originally published by The Poetry Porch/Sonnet Scroll ### Fascination with Light by Michael R. Burch Desire glides in on calico wings, a breath of a moth seeking a companionable light, where it hovers, unsure, sullen, shy or demure, in the margins of night, a soft blur. With a frantic dry rattle of alien wings, it rises and thrums one long breathless staccato and flutters and drifts on in dark aimless flight. And yet it returns to the flame, its delight, as long as it burns. Originally published by The HyperTexts ### escape!!! by michael r. burch for anaïs vionet to live among the daffodil folk . . . slip down the rainslickened drainpipe . . . suddenly pop out the GARGANTUAN SPOUT . . . minuscule as alice, shout yippee-yi-yee! in wee exultant glee to be leaving behind the LARGE THREE-DENALI GARAGE. ### Epitaph for a Palestinian Child I lived as best I could, and then I died. Be careful where you step: the grave is wide. ### Autumn Conundrum by Michael R. Burch It’s not that every leaf must finally fall, it’s just that we can never catch them all. ### The One and Only by Michael R. Burch for Beth If anyone ever loved me, It was you. If anyone ever cared beyond mere things declared; if anyone ever KNEW ... My darling, it was you. If anyone ever touched my beating heart as it flew, it was you, and only you. ### A Surfeit of Light by Michael R. Burch There was always a surfeit of light in your presence. You stood distinctly apart, not of the humdrum world— a chariot of gold in a procession of plywood. We were all pioneers of the modern expedient race, raising the ante: Home Depot to Lowe’s. Yours was an antique grace—Thrace’s or Mesopotamia’s. We were never quite sure of your silver allure, of your trillium-and-platinum diadem, of your utter lack of flatware-like utility. You told us that night—your wound would not scar. The black moment passed, then you were no more. The darker the sky, how much brighter the Star! The day of your funeral, I ripped out the crown mold. You were this fool’s gold. ### Completing the Pattern by Michael R. Burch Walk with me now, among the transfixed dead who kept life’s compact and who thus endure harsh sentence here—among pink-petaled beds and manicured green lawns. The sky’s azure, pale blue once like their eyes, will gleam blood-red at last when sunset staggers to the door of each white mausoleum, to inquire— What use, O things of erstwhile loveliness? ### Sometimes the Dead by Michael R. Burch Sometimes we catch them out of the corners of our eyes— the pale dead. After they have fled the gourds of their bodies, like escaping fragrances they rise. Once they have become a cloud’s mist, sometimes like the rain they descend; they appear, sometimes silver like laughter, to gladden the hearts of men. Sometimes like a pale gray fog, they drift unencumbered, yet lumbrously, as if over the sea there was the lightest vapor even Atlas could not lift. Sometimes they haunt our dreams like forgotten melodies only half-remembered. Though they lie dismembered in black catacombs, sepulchers and dismal graves; although they have committed felonies, yet they are us. Someday soon we will meet them in the graveyard dust blood-engorged, but never sated since Cain slew Abel. But until we become them, let us steadfastly forget them, even as we know our children must ... ### Each Color a Scar by Michael R. Burch What she left here, upon my cheek, is a tear. She did not speak, but her intention was clear, and I was meek, far too meek, and, I fear, too sincere. What she can never take from my heart is its ache; for now we, apart, are like leaves without weight, scattered afar by love, or by hate, each color a scar. ### Second Sight by Michael R. Burch I never touched you— that was my mistake. Deep within, I still feel the ache. Can an unformed thing eternally break? Now, from a great distance, I see you again not as you are now, but as you were then— eternally present and Sovereign. ### The Shrinking Season by Michael R. Burch With every wearying year the weight of the winter grows and while the schoolgirl outgrows her clothes, the widow disappears in hers. ### Yasna 28, Verse 6 by Zarathustra/Zoroaster loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch Lead us to pure thought and truth by your sacred word and long-enduring assistance, O, eternal Giver of the gifts of righteousness. O, wise Lord, grant us spiritual strength and joy; help us overcome our enemies’ enmity! ### Alien Nation by Michael R. Burch for a Christian poet who believes in "hell" On a lonely outpost on Mars the astronaut practices “speech” as alien to primates below as mute stars winking high, out of reach. And his words fall as bright and as chill as ice crystals on Kilimanjaro — far colder than Jesus’s words over the “fortunate” sparrow. And I understand how gentle Emily must have felt, when all comfort had flown, gazing into those inhuman eyes, feeling zero at the bone. Oh, how can I grok his arctic thought? For if he is human, I am not.

Copyright © | Year Posted 2019

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