5 Poems by Brian Robert Flynn | Micro-Poetry | #thesideshow

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July 31, 2017

She’s not atop the fence where she normally prances,

but in the shade. Her orange coat is frayed

and her dance is a dance of necromancy,

our daily offering of milk merely sulked over.


Circumspect, her muscles tense, she upchucks

some of the many treats a tabby fancies—

head, thorax, abdomen, feathers, head, head.

She laps up her milk without a meow said.




Picture the spoon

setting the table;

careful, each dish,

as only spoon’s able.


Envision the fiddler,

the cat with his bow;

his spiraling eyes

and quarter notes glow.


Gaze into the moon

traversing sky high;

it has a dark side

(let mother know why).


Tip your milk to the cow

getting ready to go;

her long trip to space

deserves its own show.


Still feel like jumping?

Make the bend in your knees.

Now laugh, little dog—

to sleep, if you please.


     after Franz Wright


The Bluebird Café


Sidestepping the potentially toxic

yet exceptional crumbs of pain au chocolat,

we help ourselves to everything else.


The owner comes to empty the till.

Emma the waitress slips into her tight jeans

and into his red Italian sports car.


In the soot kicked up,

an opportune bluebird locates the last scrap

and flies it home to its nest to share.


The sparrows, each of them alone

yet not alone in their own right, bathe

in the dusty sand at the edge of the road.




The old world is dying and the new world struggles to be born.

Now is the time of monsters.

— Antonio Gramsci, Italian Marxist



The compass wanders in a myriad directions, today.

Go here, do this, do that. A bit too much to say

who controls one’s mind at rest; Google, Facebook, another text.


When the ways and means don’t compute,

the brain’s subjective wiring may not be transmitting

on the same-old, expected frequencies.


I’d like to say it’s just me, the Navigator,

as corporeal as the next guy or gal, except nobody’s always wrong.

To be or not to be, getting more tricky these days.


Some tropes require an altering of perception,

bringing life to what some other guy or gal will misconstrue.

It doesn’t have to be trumped-up and tragic, but


shit ain’t easy and the struggle for embodiment continues.


What if you awaken


What if you awaken

with a flower in your hand, and you’re frightened

and attempt to throw it away?


But no matter how

hard as hell you fling, it clings to your hand,

its buds set on staying?


And what if you find

upon examining your hand that its petals

stem from your palm caked in sand?


And what if said sand

was a part of you, no different from your hair

or your fingernails, there?


And what if upon checking

your fingernails there, rays of sunshine from fingertips

shot into the air?


And what if your lips

in a low voice suggested to go back to sleep—

would you rest your sweet head?




after Samuel Taylor Coleridge

About the Author

Originally from Denver, Brian Robert Flynn is currently breathing the fiction and poetry of Washington, DC. His writing can be found in (or is forthcoming from) Clarion, Jelly Bucket, Amsterdam Quarterly, Hobart, Cease Cows, and The Moth.