Writers Institute

Bur Song

Shanna Powlus Wheeler ’04

sing the bur
like spur like starburst

sing oh
the bur’s hooks and prickles
dry-tangle glue

sing the fruit of ankle weeds
sly seed vessel

the burdock’s
grape-oval bur
with tapered spikes

the cocklebur’s
needle-stuck strawberry

and oh the many-speared
blueberries of bur grass
bur clover

sing oh the bother of burs

the bane of sheep shearers
woodland trekkers

sing the bur
stubborn traveler

sticky-thumbed
subtle hitchhiker

brute spiny wonder

Originally published in North American Review.
Forthcoming in the chapbook Lo & Behold (Finishing Line Press, 2009, www.finishinglinepress.com)




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