Solid Quarter

Visit Trembling Pillow Press for poetry books, broadsides, chapbooks, and Solid Quarter Magazine.

Visit New Orleans Poetry Fest for the annual 4 day poetry festival directed by Bill Lavender and Megan Burns.

Megan Burns' Poeticsofbone&city project on Tumblr

Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Lincoln Beach

land you can almost access, broken 

fence to a dropping, you live

half forgotten, homestead to broken glass 

trimming the tree line, come upon 

to one end or the other 

a song strung on letters laid down over time

code so loud, the stars tremble against

like a caught throat universes

calling us home

beyond all we see, but familiar for anywhere

was safer than the land colonized here

the decibel of time speeds down, parallel

to this watched point, some violence sacred

whispering rush of traffic beyond a sea wall 

stacked on a levee never built to protect us

& how our dollars were swallowed 

by the poison they fed us—that there is never 

enough—when all there is—is enough

like a trap crabbed, beauty was our everyday

broken cars & half burnt down houses 

we photographed like family, wildflowers

by the rail in soft focus so you feel alive inside

this promise of death 

time came for us beyond labels stacked 

for every soul is spoken for, the length of it secrets

spoonfuls of close calls we warriored in spaces 

marked trespass inside the globe, snowed

some paint across gravel, marked names in time’s edging 

do you think they see the SOS of it but let us linger

some parenting by neglect can feel like love

if that’s all you get here—one circle at a time 

around the star that held us 

Tuesday, March 09, 2021

There is No Home

my life is channels of what i can survive 

a song composed of loneliness

all of this searching when you know 

you have to leave empty handed 

without sound, we watch love fold up like a wave

& crash into memory, how can you believe in what doesn’t hold

madness was just thinking you have a say 

you are an image viewed from very far away 

soft & out of focus

i am the silence that comes when i run out of language

to keep me safe 

if you can’t find your way out of a city 

is that the failure you churn into love 

& how many times will you tie yourself to a sinking ship

telling yourself being unmoored is worse

than drowning 

just about anyone can take you on a roof and make promises

they’ll never keep

you’ve heard this song a thousand times & the lyrics never change 

Wednesday, March 03, 2021

Snow Moon

New Orleans is a shipwreck masquerading as a city

it hovers, horizon of worn time

i would lay down in fields of warm settings & if the moon

says i need you, cresting the rooftops of abandon 

where we travel to be able to breathe & below sea level still

high enough up & you can see the whole bend in the river

ghost barges stirring up February fog round the edges of their cut paths

call & response from the next roof over, we’re all out here leaving 

something behind, write my name on it for a lifetime, for this life 

folded into you, the way some of us get left out of the picture 

crosses the choice that some of us leave on our own if love

isn’t what you think it is: You’ll never be as free as when 

you let go of all you think you’ve learned here

asphalt shingles held us to a gripping, if you want to be inside me

under that full moon, we need to be high enough 

that i can see my city, the way i tied my life to her

the way i could come up under her, a rushing of water

is where my life spooled out, a rushing of wanting to feel everything 

there are types of desire that undo you, then there are types of wanting 

that carry you far enough to find them— some of us live in the interstices 

knowing all of this is temporary, steal what you can carry  

plunder the rest