Poetry from Sam Burks

 

the 29th

The seasons seemed to shift
in the opposite
direction

missing was the equinox

present was a leap year
drawing out in decades
and a rare birthday
such as that
was only a moment
on your flesh

like a flower you were
blossoming under red leaves
the spring would have
to wait
with the reaper

in summer you can still
wither, and I could
freeze to death
under pedals of sun-beams

it matters little
the opinions of the clock
when time unveils a linear insanity
we will be living and dying
in the beginning and the end

 

too quick the sunset

I watched the colors
of the sunset
freeze;
an abnormal chill
spread through the fiery shades
dictating a glow across
a labyrinth
of dusty windows

I felt alive,
but suspended

dangling as if from
an abstract shape
in the sky
I saw everything
stop–
all time and the
flow of headlights
balanced in the last
seconds of the day–
the finale of eternity
holding strong in my gaze

alive for a moment
and when the moment
is over and the pinkish-orange
light fades into a cold violet
I could still be
suspended
in a shadow somewhere
still holding the glow
in my gaze

 

tomorrow

This morning I just had
to stand
in the window
without coffee
or stretch
or yawn
or even a cigarette

I saw the translucent
vapor crowning the hills
to the west,
and the far away peaks
to the south
under a thin sheet
of snow

it’s winter now,
another season passed,
another season born,
and still the same old
sleepy eyes
wandering down the valley
with a million names

my home; my people;
my constant change
of heart
still lingering
in the breeze,
in the songs
of birds,
in the puddles left
on the ground
from yesterday’s rain

the old still
new, and the new
holds still
in the swaying
fabric of this
particular reality

I just had to walk
outside, barefoot,
tank-topped, torn long-johns
barely protecting
the legs
that would carry me
forward
into the rest
of forever

and sure, it was
cold, the going
was difficult,
but I
just had to laugh
for all that I
didn’t realize
I had,
I guess I’m just
thankful
to have made it
this far

Morning Glory

Morning glory breathe
your sunlight unto me
as I step between
barren rows
of grape vine
under a chilly field
of unobstructed blue

let your organic rays
blind my eyes
for a moment
and dew shimmering diamonds
soak me
to the soul

rich is the man
who wakes to crisp echoes
of frost melting over
the wild meadow
to the songs of birds
who stuck around
for the season
away from highways
and airstrips
flooding ears until
the spell has been broken

morning glory catch
the skipped beats
in the sunshine,
the breaths held
in the cold breeze,
warm these frozen bones
with your love, you have found me
again, eyes widened with thanks

wandering behind
old wooden fences
draped with moss,
through naked trees
and slippery stone,
you found me
yet again, holding your
love against corruption,
facing the day with
the boldness
of my riches

 

your body is the missing season

Yes, I admit
I miss your skin
grafting to mine

I miss the summer
between your legs
where I raised
an army of snowmen
in little lines

in winter I would throw back
the blankets
to find the next season
tattooed on your naval

I admit
that the memory stops
here

but I miss
the humid weather–
warm autumn days like this
remind me of the skin

 

her ocean

The curve of her spine
is the horizon,
like the ocean, pure,
uncharted, a shroud
hiding wonder
and quite possibly
demise for those
who seek
without understanding

I’ve never walked
this beach before.
I let the universe
wrap itself
around my ankles
first, then my knees
fell under
and I sat
in her wake,
hands full of sand,
to me those grains
made up the soft flesh

and I could feel
the breathing
through my fingers
as my palms came
to embrace the endless curve,
her body, an ocean
her heart, the vibrating
contrast between water and sky,
her eyes, the life
that transcends those layers,
and I, a part
of it all,
suspended in awe
at the vastness
in and around
our bodies

 

Sam Burks is from the San Francisco Bay Area, in California, and can be reached at srburks@gmail.com

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