Saturday, February 1, 2020



My Shoes Wish They Were on Someone Else’s Feet,
I Just Know It

There are no rats in the street,
they are too smart for that.
Only people in the street.
Performers and the homeless
which is kind of the same thing.

My shoes wish they were on someone
else’s feet, I just know it.
The same way a live in hangs around
for the rent after all the love
is gone.

Eating alone
with a brand new

Falling streamers
from the sky in lost

Josie Loves Olives

The Greeks out of Athens are moonlighting.
Setting up dummy companies in the name of long incompetent gods.
It’s simple old world trickery upon the new.
Respect your elders in an Olympic year.

An arsonist is anyone who wants to start fresh.
Josie loves olives
Her Greek friend made the introductions.
With a tangle of dark hair that could easily be mistaken
for neglected fishing line under the wrong light.

Martinis have olives, so Josie has Martinis.
She puts up with the alcohol to get at what she really wants.
Eating miles of olive salad right from the jar.
Ignoring the many micro-penis men that hit on her.
The cabbie that got conveniently confused one night
and tried to take her to his place instead of hers.

The Parthenon glad-handing tourists half a world away.
Josie sits in an obscenely red David Lynch onesie.
With a Netflix account and three dozen cases of olive salad.
All the lights turned off and her knees bunched up
into waiting chest.
A few cats milling about.
The controller right beside her with the other
for the volume.

Survey The Damage

You wake up
on the tail end of an especially
compromising bender.

Survey the damage
from a window that would never
jack off itself from the inside.

Listen to music
that is just the drugs
with instruments.

The shaking of the earth
and some belly dance
confession too.

Alexander back to India.
Waterboarding in Africa
during a drought.

The way people are always poisoned
by other people when they
get too close.

My lips so dry I can peel them off
and throw them to the floor.

That love comes from someone else.
I am just understanding.

Toothpaste along the side of the mouth
that never makes the pictures.

That lazy DNA
that seems to catch


RYAN QUINN FLANAGAN is a Canadian-born author residing in Elliot Lake, Ontario, Canada with his wife and many bears that rifle through his garbage.  His work can be found both in print and online in such places as: Evergreen Review, The New York Quarterly, Our Poetry Archive, Setu, Literary Yard, and The Oklahoma Review.

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