Friday, February 06, 2009

POETRY FRIDAY: Burning Trash by John Updike

Today, in rememberance of the late John Updike, I have one of his poems.

Burning Trash
by John Updike

At night—the light turned off, the filament
Unburdened of its atom-eating charge,
His wife asleep, her breathing dipping low
To touch a swampy source—he thought of death.
Her father's hilltop home allowed him time
To sense the nothing standing like a sheet
Of speckless glass behind his human future.
He had two comforts he could see, just two.

You can read the rest of the poem here.


At Wild Rose Reader, I have reviews of Valentine Hearts: Holiday Poetry and The Ballad of Valentine, a picture book in verse. I also have links to sites with valentine poems and book lists.

The Poetry Friday Roundup is at Wild Rose Reader today.


Andromeda Jazmon said...

I find that poem somewhat frightening and sad, although there is something satisfying and sure there too.

Julie said...

It's painful to have lost John Updike when he still had wonderful books in him, stories we'll never read now. Do you know his poem "Saying Goodbye to Very Young Children," Elaine? It's lovely, too. You can find it online at

Elaine Magliaro said...


I had never read "Burning Trash" before I went looking for a poem by Updike to post on Friday. Somehow...for some reason this poem struck me as the one to select for this week.


I've never read "Saying Goodbye to Very Young Children." I'll look for it at The Updike poem that always brings tears to my eyes is "Dog's Death."