Poems

Poetry by Michael R. Burch

Poetry, I found you
where at last they chained and bound you;
with devices all around you
to torture and confound you,
I found you—shivering, bare.

They had shorn your raven hair
and taken both your eyes
which, once cerulean as dawn’s skies,
had leapt with the sun to wild surmise
of what was waiting there.

Your back was bent with untold care
where savage brands had left cruel scars
as though the wounds of countless wars;
your bones were broken with the force
with which they’d lashed your flesh so fair.

You once were loveliest of all.
So many nights you held in thrall
a scrawny lad who heard your call
from where dawn’s milling showers fall—
pale meteors through sapphire air.

I learned the eagerness of youth
to temper for a lover’s touch;
I felt you, tremulant, reprove
each time I fumbled over-much.
Your merest word became my prayer.

You took me gently by the hand
and led my steps from child to man;
now I look back, remember when
you shone, and cannot understand
why now, tonight, you bear their brand.

I will take and cradle you in my arms,
remindful of the gentle charms
you showed me once, of yore;
and I will lead you from your cell tonight
back into that incandescent light

which flows out of the core
of a sun whose robes you wore.
And I will wash your feet with tears
for all those blissful years . . .
my love, whom I adore.

Featured in Issue One of New Lyre Magazine

7 comments on “Poetry by Michael R. Burch

  1. This one poem surpasses any other contemporary I have read. This is the restoration of la poésie classique!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Of course it is pleasant and encouraging to hear such praise, and from such a distinguished guest! The praise is especially gratifying because I had substantially written this poem in my teens and finished it by age 19. There have been a few minor tweaks since, but nothing major. There is an interesting story behind the poem, if you care to hear it, having to do with the rape of Poetry by the so-called “establishment.”

      Like

  2. mackenziepoet

    This is classic poetry in the grand manner!

    Like

  3. “Amen,” quo Jobsen, “but where I mean to lie
    Shall be nay whips, but rhymes by Burch
    To scourge the fakirs by
    And to the tin-eared Culture Corps
    Finally put the lie.”

    — With apologies to Mr. Kipling,
    Edward C. Hayes II July, 2021

    Liked by 2 people

    • Mediation by the author? Let the readers make their response! Mr. Burch especially welcomed. English lacks words strong enough to properly praise his poem.

      Like

      • Sorry about the duplication. I posted my reply to your verse in the wrong slot! This is what I meant to say:

        I hope and believe Mr. Kipling would approve, not only of the sentiment but of the verse. And oddly, I have a poem about the real poet being the true fakir (as opposed to a faker) that was recently published by The Lyric. I will post it here on the chance that it may be of interest.

        Maker, Fakir, Curer
        by Michael R. Burch

        A poem should be a wild, unearthly cry
        against the thought of lying in the dark,
        doomed—never having seen bright sparks leap high,
        without a word for flame, none for the mark
        an ember might emblaze on lesioned skin.

        A poet is no crafty artisan—
        the maker of some crock. He dreams of flame
        he never touched, but—fakir’s courtesan—
        must dance obedience, once called by name.

        Thin wand, divine!, this world is too the same—
        all watery ooze and flesh. Let fire cure
        and quickly harden here what can endure.

        Published by The Lyric and The HyperTexts

        Liked by 1 person

    • I hope and believe Mr. Kipling would approve, not only of the sentiment but of the verse. And oddly, I have a poem about the real poet being the true fakir (as opposed to a faker) that was recently published by The Lyric. I will post it here on the chance that it may be of interest.

      Maker, Fakir, Curer
      by Michael R. Burch

      A poem should be a wild, unearthly cry
      against the thought of lying in the dark,
      doomed—never having seen bright sparks leap high,
      without a word for flame, none for the mark
      an ember might emblaze on lesioned skin.

      A poet is no crafty artisan—
      the maker of some crock. He dreams of flame
      he never touched, but—fakir’s courtesan—
      must dance obedience, once called by name.

      Thin wand, divine!, this world is too the same—
      all watery ooze and flesh. Let fire cure
      and quickly harden here what can endure.

      Published by The Lyric and The HyperTexts

      Like

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