In Burning the Old Year by Naomi Shihab Nye, Nye refers to "notes", "lists", and "letters" as things that can be burned. From reading this poem, I interpret the theme to be the short time for which memories last and about how all of the papers you have will only exist for so long before they are lost and forgotten.
This leads me to believe that "burning" doesn't really refer to burning in the sense of burning wood, but rather another deeper meaning. However, I do not know what that deeper meaning is. So, what does "burning" symbolize in "Burning the Old Year"?