Sunday, August 1, 2021




Kalamata Rex


An upbringing - 

a conglomerate of beliefs all whittled 

down to the worst cultural and personal leanings 

you can find which is why the world always remains 

far smaller in any real tangible sense,

more the burning cherry of some 15 minute

smoke break cigarette than some distant 

jaundiced volleyball sun staring back down the 

Copernicus-barrel at maximum peep freak resolution 

so some stuff-shirt from the university can tell you that

most olives are pitted, hardly ever against one another.


No one worries about the citadel on the hill.

It protects no one, not even that faltering embankment

of falling rocks and endangered birds weaned off the beak.


The citadel protects no one as the law protects no one.

Just a few lazy sea-eroded walls and a tour guide in season.


This goblet of wine may be fortified, but that is it.

Records in the dark for these simple monastery ears.


Fossilized arguments in public parks, surrendering the high ground.

Awnings for shelter from long cowered rains.


A discarded bridal train in the gutter.

The city dominated by food trucks and no longer the citadel.

The Collector


Don't believe the movies,

the collector likes his job.


Gets off on the fear of others.

On causing bodily harm.


Who knows why.

May be a lost childhood thing 

or some other dark ramrod pathology.


That small chubby he gets in his trousers

each time they ride up on some house.


With numbers and the element of surprise.

He doesn't want you to have the money.


A slight smirk betrays his face when you're a little short.

Pictures of your children leaving school.


A pipe sliding down from the sleeve of his shirt.

So close you will never forget that nasty cologne.


Hair plugs to thwart an early balding.

And always the Fear. 




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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