J. Bradley

J. Bradley is the author of The Adventures of Jesus Christ, Boy Detective (Pelekinesis, 2016) and the Yelp review prose poem collection Pick How You Will Revise A Memory (Robocup Press, 2016). He lives at jbradleywrites.com.


The Ribcage Goes To A Funeral, But Not To Say Goodbye


This former lover had more courage than you

by leaving his face behind, his bathroom wall

wearing what was left of his smile. The ache

settles in his vacancy.


You understand why he could no longer stand

to be landlocked; he thought there was a god

somewhere who could love him like you

and his other past lovers could not

or would not love him.


You wait until the rest of the mourners leave

to skitter up to the casket. You caress it the way

you caressed his body in the dawning light.

You fight the weight of grief from your tips;

this coffin is his one chance to be perfect.



The Ribcage Explains Why It Never Votes


Your latest lover asks whether you voted today

and you don’t say anything. He asks you again;

you don’t say anything. You feel his eyes

trying to harvest you for shame, his mouth

a firing pin. You ask: what’s changed?

He answers: I can love you in public.

You ask: why don’t you?

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