Harper Lee

Kind words fall away from sincerity
like well cooked meat
falls away from the bone.

I might have believed you
if the mockingbirds were not smiling.
You should have seen them
in the summer trees

behind you.

For Upton

From Helicon Hall
to your tree house in Delaware

there was likely little solace
to take
after your wife ran off with
the Dunes Poet of Provincetown.

But it must have helped a little
when Sinclair Lewis
became your janitor

and Christ and Shelley
had thumb wars
in your mind.


Copyright © 2010 Ryan Quinn Flanagan


Ryan Quinn Flanagan presently resides in Elliot Lake , Ontario , Canada. He is the author of three books of poetry, the most recent entitled Pigeon Theatre (JTI Press). His work has recently appeared in The New York Quarterly, Vallum, Quills, and The Antigonish Review.