The Shine Journal

Exceptional Flash, Poetry, Art and Photography!

Three from Skylar Hamilton Burris


Once we whispered, you and I,
Beneath the cypress tree.
We were children--very young;
I thought you must love me.

What voices whisper to you now
Where silently you sleep?
The earth is old upon the grave
Where anguished I did weep.

Once we shared our secret dreams
On lazy, quiet days;
I thought you were the very mirror
Of sunshine's golden rays.

What dreams do you envision now
Where lifeless you must lie?
Long has lived the death that I
Forbade you then to die.

Once we laughed at petty troubles;
We had no cares at all.
We danced together beneath the leaves
That scattered in the fall.

Do you laugh and do you dance
In that other world somewhere?
Long ago you left me for it;
One day I'll see you there.


We like to think that death is finely scripted;
We know in every text the end’s prepared,
But there are looser ends than man imagines,
And sometimes fate can catch us unaware.

But we can only be what God has made us--
These human things, that feel the weight of care.
And we can only hope that God will help us
To shoulder well the sorrows that we bear.


Now water seems a mild thing,
As patient as the dead;
In gentle form of morning dew,
We see it nightly shed.

It parts for rocks within a stream;
It quarrels not, is meek;
It molds to fit the glass it fills
And will low level seek.

And yet for all its supple strains
It is like nothing known;
It washes clean the taint of sin,
Carves canyons out of stone.

 BIO! I am a mother to four children: two novels, a son, and a daughter. I stay at home with the latter two while working as a freelance writer and editor. My short stories have appeared in The First Line and Raconteur while my poetry has been published by Time of Singing, The Penwood Review, The Tucumcari Literary Review, AIM: America’s Intercultural Magazine, and numerous other literary magazines. I hold a B.A. in English and Economics from the University of Virginia and an M.A. in English from the University of Texas at Brownsville.  Thank you for taking the time to consider my work.

These works have been previously published as part of a collection titled A Greater Sound by Far (2005). I retain all rights and am offering reprint rights.


Once We Whispered: inspired by the thought of a friend possibly dying

In Memoriam inspired by the death of a relative

On Water inspired by reading the Tao Te Ching.

Click the pics to meet the members!


Editor: Pamela Tyree Griffin

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