On Married Love

by Jeffrey Burghauser (June 2019)


Wedded, Frederic Leighton, 1882
 

for M.C.L.

Standing-swaying burnt & dazed
On the Gulf of Aqaba’s
Swelter-fastened southern flange,
God & bodily distress
Twisted all my mind until
I was someone seeing Saint
Valentine’s Day solemnized
At the gold Sheldonian.
I remember ivory
Men in tailored formalwear
Passing through those burnished doors
Nameless with their weightless dates—
Slender & exquisitely
Nameless nymphen nonchalant,
Dripping silk from their physiques.
Each admitted in her hand
A specific, long-stemmed rose.
 
*
 
Fancy easily supplies
Pseudo-substance of this sort.
No one can anatomize,
Blush-with-pigment, and report
Real Arcadia as well
As they can a throbbing Hell.
 
Thank you for the quiet We—
The unmappably exact,
Heaven-sent & easefully
Adjective-repellent fact
That instantiates no less
Than a human happiness.
 
 
 
 

__________________________________
Jeffrey Burghauser is a teacher in Columbus, OH. He was educated at SUNY-Buffalo and the University of Leeds. He currently studies the five-string banjo with a focus on pre-WWII picking styles. A former artist-in-residence at the Arad Arts Project (Israel), his poems have appeared (or are forthcoming) in Appalachian Journal, Fearsome Critters, Iceview, Lehrhaus, and New English Review. Jeffrey's book-length collection, Real Poems, is available on Amazon and his website is www.jeffreyburghauser.com.

Follow NER on Twitter @NERIconoclast
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