"Stars and Forgetfulness" by Michael Burkard was published in Issue 01 of the Marlboro Review

Stars and Forgetfulness

Michael Burkard

"Some stars heighten directly in intensity
and pass away in the infinite consciousness
of the angels --" from Rilke´s letters

yes, but we have forgotten who we are,
there is no thought to take place of us,
we diminish like the sleeve of the old woman

disappearing so slowly we paid very little attention,
only to find her desperately vivid in our eyes years and years later --

some people are like that --
some stars in the sky commune with elements

and emotional subtexts which no one dreams, answers, or
The feeling of a cedar tree which overhears geometry.
The door a brown spider retreats for.

Some stars which heighten
and the propensity of other stars to mother the universe,
to mother the milk of the night

and the sobbing years after.
For the sobbing is only momentary
and then there is more light.

And dark. A bell.
Two sleeves. The rest of the shirt.
Person wearing shirt.

She brought us power.
We honor her.

I told her I wanted to visit,
I would visit everyone.
This is what I needed to do.

To be a phantom, to be a door.
To be need in return,
desired like milk.

Michael Burkhard's books include The Fires They Kept (Metro Books) and My Secret Boat (Norton).

Copyright ©1996 Michael Burkard. All rights reserved.

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