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Monday, August 17, 2015

Featuring the poetry of Ryan Quinn Flanagan

Meth Lab

It is good to see the entrepreneurial spirit
alive and well, young people branching out,
diversifying, not doing what their parents did
or their parents before;
people coming and going like books
checked out of the library
banging on the door at all hours:
shaky, thin, in tatters -
up on lifted feet, peering into darkened windows,
a blue stained mattress in the front yard
nearly swallowed up by overgrown brush
there is no one to cut the lawn
the great indoors, everyone busy inside,
and when the cops come finally
they will find all those funnels
and something on the stove
that is not mother’s

For Your Viewing Pleasure

First the woman came in.
A gringo girl, blonde,
just like the Chicanos liked them,
sprinkled in many oils
hamming it up for the

Then they brought in the donkey
stage right
from behind a musty brown curtain
and forced it to mount the woman
from behind
with a series of ropes
and pulleys.

And I thought of Catherine the Great.
All those animal rights crazies throwing buckets
of their menstrual blood
over glamorous fur-coat

But this was Mexico.

Life was cheap.
The drinks too.

And the way the donkey squealed
you could tell it wanted no part
of that woman.

As if it had been a man of God
or a pencil sharpener  
or a raging

in a past

Interest Rates Rise with a Gun in Your Face

Ski-masks in summer
there must be a bank nearby
and a getaway vehicle legally parked
to avoid surprises
and the men brandishing guns
run by
and their guns run by
as well

on their way
to be stuck in the face
of some lucky

who thought her
low fat yogurt would be
the highlight of


Jobs Don’t Look for People

and I had many resumes
out all over the place

and many more
in a polished black case
under my arm

from a second hand shop
2000 miles away

that made me look more like
a travelling Adventist
then a prospective

and every day at noon
I would watch the kid dressed up
as a medieval bard
offer a single red rose to passing couples
then compose a song on the spot
to the maiden in question
so that the boyfriend was a cheapskate
if he didn’t buy the full bouquets
of half dead flowers from
the black bucket
at the bard’s bell-slippered feet

it was a real good hustle
I watched it every

as I popped pimples on my 21 year old face
and wondered why the inner harbour
always smelled of garbage.

The Firefighters

The fire engine
pulled up to the curb
and the firefighters
jumped out.

There were four of them
all laughing
as they quickly unzipped
stood over a homeless man
laying on a subway grate
aimed their firehouses
and sprayed.

The homeless man didn’t even stir.
He may have been dead.

Then the firefighters
all jumped back in the fire engine
and sped away.

to the next

Carbon Dating my Farts Back to the Bums
of Galilee

They wanted to know
why the painter had painted a flying saucer
into the back of his annunciation painting
back in 1600
but the painter was long dead
so they dug him up
and interviewed his bones
with many cameras

laid out anatomically
more or less
on a long white tarp
in conference room C
of some big shot hotel
with its own bottled

Question after question.
For many hours.
But the painter remained mum.

Which only added

to his legend.

Ryan Quinn Flanagan is a happily unmarried proud father of none. He lives in Elliot Lake, Ontario, Canada with a nurse that drives a big blacked out truck and many bears that roam the streets going through his garbage.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

New Release: Charles Bukowski On Writing. Ecco, 2015. Edited by Abel Debritto.

Returned from Canada a few days ago after five weeks. Interesting to read yesterday Claudia La Rocco’s New York Times article ‘On Writing,’ a Charles Bukowski Collection of Rants and Musings in Letters (9 August 2015) in which she discusses ECCO’s latest Bukowski release. 

La Rocco links her review to a 2013 BOLD MONKEY assessment of the Best & Worst of Buk’s posthumous poetry ECCO publications.

Click on ‘Bukowski’s case’ within the article to find the original brief BM overview. Find the NY Times article here:

Saturday, June 27, 2015

New Release: John Yamrus BURN. Illustrated by Janne Karlsson. Svensk Apache Press, 2015 (32 pages)

The American poet John Yamrus and the Swedish artist Jan Karlsson again join forces to inflict literary mayhem on the Western world. This chapbook consists of 12 poems by Yamrus together with 12 full page illustrations by Karlsson.

As in his last four full-length Epic Rites Press books, Yamrus’ work is characteristically minimalistic, confessional, didactic, steeped in cultural allusions & is hilariously ironic.

Yamrus loves kicking the backside of the literary establishment. In this volume he condemns the uselessness of writing workshops, the seriousness to which some poets take their craft & the lack of what most ultimately have to say or actually achieve.

In the poem ‘when’ Yamrus playfully questions the very nature of what Art is:

(Reprinted with the permission of the publisher)

Karlsson’s visual representations of Yamrus’ poems add a layer of complexity and humour to Yamrus’s work. Karlsson’s world is inhabited by simple but zany ghost-like folk who shriek in pain or laughter, but who in the end, like Yamrus, just want to get on & enjoy life.

                              (Reprinted with the permission of the publisher)

This chapbook is beautifully smooth to hold & provides a brief, original take on life by two of the world's best practitioners of their art.

Find out more about John Yamrus’ poetry on his site here:

Find the artist Janne Karlsson’s web page here:

Sunday, June 7, 2015

48th Street Press- Broadside Series #6

I am pleased & honoured to again have some of my poems featured in 48th Street Press’s sixth broadside series. The editor Chris Byck reckons this year’s submissions have been the strongest to date. Here is a list of this year’s contributors:

George Anderson
Karina Bush 
Dianne Borsenik 
Steve Brightman 
J.J. Campbell 
Alan Catlin 
Don Cauble 
Subhankar Das 
Arturo Desimone
John Dorsey  
Linh Dinh 
Ryan Quinn Flanagan 
Robert W. Getz - 
John Grochalski 
Daryl Hall 
Fiona Helmsley 
Charles Johnson 
Scott Laudati 
Ally Malinenko 
Scott Silsbe  
Ben John Smith  
John Sweet 
Bunkong Tuon  
Angelo Verga 
D.R. Wagner 
Richard Wink 
Thom Young 

Find out more about the 48th Street Press Broadside Series here:

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Keep On Keepin' On

I have finally received my Australian region version of Alan Hicks's documentary film (2014) which features, amongst many great poignant moments, the late great jazz musician Clark Terry's mentorship of the young blind pianist Justin Kauflin. A considered film review and an interview with one of the film makers will follow down the track.

Find earlier comments & links on BM to the film here: