A Moment

it is pushing midnight,
and I am sitting at the picnic table
in the yard behind our home

wisps of white cloud scud above.
the moon higher now – earlier
it hovered over the delta,
light rippling from it:
a yellow road rippling down
from the edge of the Atlantic,
following the Merrimac,
across the chop,
wavery highway, a rougte towards the harbor.

the stars are echoes of past light.
cold air around me,
hair blowing.
thoughts blown by other winds,
pushed by other hands.

I am alone, behind this house.
I am quiet under this canopy I cannot fathom.







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dim lit

there’s this moment when things just

come forward,
like stalkers emerging from the fog

and you don’t really want to see them but they are ineffable

it is all in the moment

It is You in the moment

and your mom wanted better for you

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Winter Drift

Across the way,
thickening winter fog
obscures the moored craft
in the harbor,
muting this watery, drifting place.

Skeletal trees
stand clustered on boulders
along the shore –
thrown up by
some past trauma or another.
A lazy ribbon of snow
snakes down beside them,
fading as it nears the lapping sea.

A cold rain mixes in,
gale warning up
as the coast draws in,
preparing its body for a sudden blow.

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The Eighth

This kiss, that story
whispered to David, under the hanging gardens –
the promise Heloise made to Abelard,
the crowning of Ines as Peter wept.
Life lost willingly, always a fleeting thing.

Time’s lash, barbed fingers drawing blood,
the groaning underneath, movement within,
this kiss, that story.
Time over time
body over body.

-Martin Burns
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the map of the geography of desire,
revealing a hidden world.
traces the geographic coordinates of
love|lust –
their intersections.
the meridians pulse with energy,
sweeping across equators,

where careful choreography
becomes necessity,
the tracing of a finger
along a beloved throat,
the sound a murmuring heart,
the sudden catch
in a soft cry.

the small things –
the devotion to place,
not time.
the deeper knowing
that comes with devotion,
every inch mapped –
fixed, learned, and seemingly eternal –

the scent that lingers in their leaving.

the known and unknown,
worlds of dragons and lost ships –
this churning, human world.

-Martin Burns
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The Seventh

This shared kiss, one body, one mouth,
exclamations and proclamations, this tumbling tumult.
This shared kiss, these shared lips. This shared breath.
Sinking into verdant land, into this Garden. This shaking Earth.

Writhing groaning gasping life.
Frenzied motion and this quickening, this eternal –
Tree of Life and the sacred fruit.
Cojoined, erupting, ripe flesh and a quaking wood.

-Martin Burns

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