Ryan Quinn Flanagan

Broken

The things 

that break you 

hardly ever 

shatter you completely

you are not a glass 

on the floor

there are large wounded 

chucks of you

that remain

more like when 

the poachers cut the face

away from an elephant for its ivory

and the rest 

of the body is just left there,

it is much more 

like that.

Vampire Harlequin

She is on the opposite couch

curled up reading one of her Vampire themed

harlequins again.

On her Kindle 

under an electric blanket 

that no longer works.

I think I’ll write a Vampire harlequin,

I say.

The protagonist will be a thing of garlic

named Clove.

Don’t ruin this this for me,

she says

without looking up 

from her Kindle.

I can tell from her voice

that I already have.

I’ll Be Here All Week

except 

that I won’t 

be

I am headed out of town

for a few days 

for work

but that is what they say 

when they drop a killer line

on someone:

I’ll be here all week

 

just like that 

which is meant to say 

they have bested some rival

and everyone knows it

 

the only thing 

is that I won’t be 

here

not even in spirit

 

I am talking that 

with me

 

so if I were to make such 

a claim

I would be a liar

and I don’t want to be that

 

which reminds me,

I will be here all next week,

but that really isn’t the same thing

at all

 

now is it.

Published 12-17-17

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, The Peregrine Muse, In Between Hangovers, Red Fez, and The Oklahoma Review.

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