“Poetry” by John E. Buri

John E. Buri


If I were perfect, I wouldn’t be a poet.
—Michael Patrick

I am a voice
That will not speak in shadows.
I am a man born fully grown.
I have been labeled a madman.
I am mad. I have no set destination
Like the arrow
That knows its destiny
Before leaving the string.

Words are no longer
The color of blood.
I can appreciate the significance
Of not being dead.
Language has become my benediction.
I am a voice
As vulnerable as ribbon.

from Rattle #15, Summer 2001


John E. Buri: “Critiquing my first poem in a workshop, Richard Shelton said, ‘What a terrible waste of punctuation.’ Two years later, after one of his readings, Mr. Shelton was asked who his favorite is. He responded, ‘I have so many, but one of them is sitting here with us: John Buri.’ I have never been more proud.”

Rattle Logo