The Burden of Man- A Ghazal

Atlas has fallen to his knees for heavy is the burden of Man

And the shoulders of Earth quiver and sway under the burden of Man.


Shoes wound the soil like shame wounds the soul

And His own mother's cheek scathed and mangled under the heel of Man


Little Miss Wilderness, The Unbridled; tamed and trimmed, confined in a concrete corner

Now the air smells of pine and essence of life. Beauteous is the den of Man.


Ten ruthless spears pierce and sever the tenacious, ancient verdant face

And Old-Man-Mulberry moans as he bleeds maimed by the hand of Man.


The stalk once tall and staggering, stripped and reaped by the grim sickle

And Proud Mother Wheat made naked and devoured by the yellowing fangs of Man


And the shoulders of Earth quiver and sway under the burden of Man

But The Maeflower, steel from the hawke's eye, stands and withstands the burden of Man.

◄ Divine Sacrifice

My Better 3/4 ►


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Mae Foreman

Tue 27th Aug 2019 11:01

So very true dear Jason. We are a cruel, selfish kind.
Thank you my friend!?

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Jason Bayliss

Tue 27th Aug 2019 10:36

Heavy is the burden of man, which is ironic because we're one of the few, if not the only species intelligent enough to know it and do something about it.
It never ceases to amaze me that the most intelligent species on the planet can be so damn stupid.
A great piece of writing, as ever Mae.

J. x

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Mae Foreman

Tue 27th Aug 2019 09:43

Thank you Adam! I'm glad it found a home for it! Also, I'll send you all the details for the Ghazal! ?

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Adam Rabinowitz

Mon 26th Aug 2019 16:21

I agree with Kate...that is a great line. And once again after reading your work I am iff to research the form as I have never seen the word. I hope it is not as exacting or exhausting as that sestina I was challenged to do (I mean I challenged didn't challenge me).

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Mae Foreman

Mon 26th Aug 2019 10:54

Thank you Devon! I love repetitions, they hold such power. I often like to use them, even in prose. I was a little unsure about whether the topic was fitting for a Ghazal but the authentic spirit of the genre just wouldn't come out of me! Yours, though, was spot on! Very well crafted and I liked the size of it, significantly more succinct than mine. I have yet to master the art of saying more by writing less. I also read Jericho Brown's Prison. Brilliant!
Thank you Devon! ?

Devon Brock

Sun 25th Aug 2019 21:56

Great Ghazal, Mae. I love what you've done with the form. I think you may have discovered the true power of it's repetitions. I read quite a few Ghazals as we each sought to master the form, and I must say, this stands well above most, akin to Jericho Brown's "Prison". Different topic clearly, but equally as weighty. Well worth the wait.


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Mae Foreman

Sun 25th Aug 2019 12:54

Thank you Kate G! I had that one in my books for a long time and didn't know what to do with it!
Thank you Lisa, always great support!
Thank you ladies?

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Lisa C Bassignani

Sun 25th Aug 2019 12:52


Absolutely Fabulous !!!!


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Kate G

Sun 25th Aug 2019 12:46

You never disappoint Mae. I love the line.... The shoe wounds the soil like shame wounds the soul

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