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Tony Burge

tony burge jr

I received my B.A. in history from Ohio University and my M.A. from the University of Nebraska. I spend extended periods of time in the Appalachian mountains, running, hiking, and being. Most of my writing has its genesis in a momentary thought while moving through the natural world.


When I was young
I followed the sound
of your siren-song leaves,
falling and crashing,
as the forest reached
to the light
like a devoted zealot,
praying to sun, wind and rain.

I got lost
when I went off trail
and thought to myself
that I might die
under that monastery
of trees
and no one would
ever know

and as I stand in your stillness
watching as the sun
lifts the fog
from your hills
like a silk gown,
a small part of me
is still
ok with that.

Elementary Dreams

The night brings
with it
a broken language
of memories
that float
in the abeyant air
like a thick vapor,

an animation
of my second grade teacher
who sacrificed two souls
under a shrapnel
of October stars,
appeared before me
on a park bench,
burning with vibrant youth
and smiling
like a mother,

she turned
and reminded me
of the time
I set the class turtle
and carried him
into the woods
and she sighed remembering
how full of love
we once were.


Climb up to the rock
that looks out upon the lake
and follow with your eyes
the winding trail that kisses
the shore a thousand times
all over.
Look at how still the water,
and how it rests holding
the sky and hills
in its belly.
Watch the birds watch you,
and then everything else
from a point of view
that can only be seen in dreams.
Listen as they sing
while casting off into the distance
welcoming you to stay

You have always
been here.
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