Three poems ~ poetry by Frank William Finney

Skimming Sideways

When you reach that magic age
when no player picks the magnesium trick
from your sandwich, you’re wont to
exhale red notches, the kind mountain
goats rejuvenate when they wash up in
Forge Village. 

Disgruntled cherry pickers, notwithstanding,
if you have never smoked a dobro guitar, or
dwelt in the doldrums of twin religions,
Go ahead and cancel your contract, they’ll still
send you the wallpaper if you promise them
a soap dish. Copper is appreciated, though
not required. The follow and flare ups are
common law swing effects, scandalous in
coffee cups, and have known to be fatal
in pre-natal diatribes.  This shouldn’t worry
you if you’ve seen the bats skimming
sideways over the hedges anywhere
in Ireland or the Caribbean. 

A long time ago, you thought it was Jimmy
but I can reassure you, nobody from his
bumper car ever raised those sorts of sparks
without using his lip balm.  And he only
sold those to bankrupt morticians.


Saturday Night Sports Bar

First the cheering       waiters mutter.
Then the jeering,        roaches take cover.
Then the swearing,     barflies shudder.
Then, of course,          bouncers ooze out
The fisticuffs.              of the woodwork.


Riding Coach

He’d sound out the letters
as if he were learning

to read the scrolls
without a helmet,

fumbling every passage
he’d tackled

on the tongue
of dichotomies.

Reader, they hired him
to teach ancient history.

O, chalk full of mystery
meet your messiah!

Frank William Finney is the author of The Dissolution of the Sparkling Bridge and Songs of Insomnia (Suksit Siam).  His poems can be found in Marathon Literary Review, Tofu Arts PressVariant Literary Journal and elsewhere.   Frank taught literature at Thammasat University in Thailand from 1995 to 2020.  He is currently based in the Boston area.