Inscape    number 25 in the 2River Chapbook Series January 2019

John Sughrue


Disappointment rumbles around in my stomach like the huge machines at the quarry that move the slag to the pile of discarded, unwanted stuff, that’s probably good for something, but nothing that’s immediately useful … throbs and thumps in my guts like longing for the one you Love for nothing, they either don’t Love you anymore, or didn’t really Love you to begin with, or told you they Loved you but lied, or Loved you but cheated anyway, or were incapable of Love but needed a ride… grinds and scrapes in my innards like being stood up—again—going from window to window to see if they’re pulling up out front or if they’ve swung around to the back by the barn or if they just took the shortcut through the woods or checking the phone again to see if it’s working ‘cause you explained how crazy it makes you being stood up and they pretty much swore a blood oath to never do it again, so they couldn’t possibly be doing it again … boils my middle like lava, like that smelted stuff they smelt at the smelter …

I Remember How It Felt

At that moment
It seemed so life changing
We hadn’t even met

At that moment
It seemed like everything
I had to fight for it

At that moment
It seemed like the end of the world
We cried together

At that moment
It seemed time had stopped
And I couldn’t breathe

At that moment
It seemed like gravity increased
She just kept walking

And didn’t look back

Meeting Arianne for the very first time!

Thigh deep, and wet and heavy, the snow impeded her progress so
Several hours into labor, anger and heartbreak fueled her advance
Cursing me, she found the truck behind my lover’s house
She drove herself to deliver this child
To release herself from her burden
To unshackle me from mine
Fortune smiled and sent a slipping, swerving taxi
Chased and apprehended at a red light
Conscripted to convey my sorry carcass
Tail tucked, contrite and ashamed
Facing the music facing the storm
facing up to taking the heat and biting the bullet
Arriving within the same hour
As this tiny being
Brokering Peace
United, wee three
Hello, Arianne!
Nice to meet you, you Sweet Freakin’ Thing!

John Sughrue was originally published in One Imagined Word at a Time (Writers for Recovery, 2016) and again in One Imagined Word at a Time, Vol. II. He currently has a poem on display in an art installation at the Museum of Everyday Life in Glover, Vermont. He wants people to know he isn’t nearly as interesting as the thinks he is, but believes he has a perfect face for radio.

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