What burns?

Linking this to Daily Post, The Poetry Pantry at Poets United, and with Open Link at Imaginary Garden with Real Toads.

What burns?

Daily Post #2

The pyre is lit, but what burns?
What is gone with the flames?
For as the soul rises to heaven,
The memories sink deeper,
Heavier and heavier it becomes,
Till the heart cannot bear more,
Moments that we had stored,
That mattered, then and now,
Of the times we had together,
Of the emotions we had felt,
Of love, those moments spelt,
In these memories, they stay,
Distant, yet close, every way.
What is gone with the flames?
The pyre is lit, but what burns?

Image Source, via Wikimedia Commons.
Cremation on the bank of Bagamati, by Gregor Younger

(© Vinay Leo R. @ I Rhyme Without Reason, 2nd July 2016)


Poetry & writing are to me, a breath of fresh air in a life that is sometimes covered by the smoke of sorrow or self doubt. They also become the sweets I share to celebrate when life offers me a reason to. But most of all, they are to me, my life. For each word I write is a piece of my heart, a thought that just had to find its way into the world.

44 thoughts on “What burns?”

  1. It is always hard to let go of someone physically. The memories stay, the emotions stay, the love remains too. It is just not physically manifestable, and that is what burns on the pyre, the ability to tell someone how much you love them and watch their face light up in a smile, the ability to spend time with them and do things together, the comfort you get with a simple hug, or the strength you get just by holding their hands.
    (Jaibala Rao recently posted… Create Magical Stories With Colgate)My Profile

  2. I think your question (and answer) suggests that what truly burns is not necessarily physical…and that is the hardest damage to repair – powerfully written
    (Jae Rose recently posted… Syntax)My Profile

  3. The fire takes the flesh, but so many other things–feelings, access to memories, hopes–are burned in the process… I’ve never seen a funeral where the deceased’s body is consumed by flames in front of mourners. I wonder what goes through the mind of the watchers… what is lost… and what is gained.

    • I can’t put that to words, Magaly. I’ve seen such a funeral, but from afar, and still, the heart and the mind have felt heavy. Unsure what is lost, and what is gained.

  4. If only what ever burned finished burning in the fire instead of perpetually searing our heart and soul. Or do I? I love how you framed your plaint in rhetorical questions. This really speaks to me.

    • Yes. That’s a big “if only”. I wonder if everyone feels that “if only”.

      Glad you liked the poem, Susan and that it spoke to you. 🙂 Thank you very much.

  5. Memories don’t burn but the connection does. All that you have left of them is what is within you or the trinkets of life that recall their name, their words and deeds and those mementos too slowly lose their meaning when you realize you have really lost them.
    (Old Egg recently posted… We have a tall fence)My Profile

  6. Poignant poem…it does not seem fair to not know the answers…but we all leave, and someone else will feel the pain for our loss..and life goes on, but oh, the pain!!

Leave a Comment

CommentLuv badge

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: