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  • By Michael R. Burch

Insurrection & Other Poetry

Saskia with a Flower - Rembrandt


She has become as the night—listening

for rumors of dawn—while the dew, glistening,

reminds me of her, and the wind, whistling,

lashes my cheeks with its soft chastening.

She has become as the lights—flickering

in the distance—till memories old and troubling

rise up again and demand remembering ...

like peasants rebelling against a mad king.



a bitter

ache to bear . . .

once starlight


in your hair . . .

a shining there

as brief

as rare.

Regret . . .

a pain

I chose to bear . . .


the torrent

of your hair . . .

and show me

once again—

how rare.

At Once

—for Beth

Though she was fair,

though she sent me the epistle of her love at once

and inscribed therein love’s antique prayer,

I did not love her at once.

Though she would dare

pain’s pale, clinging shadows, to approach me at once,

the dark, haggard keeper of the lair,

I did not love her at once.

Though she would share

the all of her being, to heal me at once,

yet more than her touch I was unable bear.

I did not love her at once.

And yet she would care,

and pour out her essence . . .

and yet—there was more!

I awoke from long darkness,

and yet—she was there.

I loved her the longer;

I loved her the more

because I did not love her at once.

Originally published by The Lyric

Michael R. Burch is the editor of The HyperTexts, on-line at His poetry has been translated into fourteen languages, set to music by eleven composers, used in collaborations with visual artists, and taught in high schools and universities. A five-time Pushcart nominee, his poems, translations, letters, articles, essays, jokes and puns have been published by BBC Radio 3, The Hindu, Reader's Digest, TIME, USA Today, The Washington Post,Writer’s Digest—The Year’s Best Writing, and hundreds of literary journals.

1 comentário

Lionel Chan
Lionel Chan
22 de nov. de 2020

The Maiden in her celestial sublimity The Mother in her terrestrial nourishment The Crone in her wisdom and guidance To Love them all at Once! Perhaps then the demanded reckonings and uprisings would not have to be so painful, our trust in the intensity would flow with grace. Where have all the midwives gone?

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