Poetry from Luke Usry


He only sleeps on Wednesdays, in a bed of nails and glass and

root canals. He times his sidewalk strides to beat breaks

and harvests gravity’s bounty from the cracked concrete,

wet and flowing like a shattered hydrant or an open wound

into a gutter, golden at the end of the refracted parabola.

He folds origami ships from his own suicide notes and sends them

floating into the sounding sewer. He is the worm in Adam’s apple

pie paradigm parade – think McDonald’s, not grandma.

He spirals like a butterfly born into a wind tunnel, taking

selfies at the gates of hell and smiling in all of them.

His brain was built from the shards of false prophets,

his synthetic soul fed by plastic prayers and Formica faith.

He is all the king’s horses and he is all the king’s men and he is walking on

eggshells. He buys a KitchenAid crown and scatters seeds from forbidden fruit,

his chin wet and sweet. It is time for him to feed and rest and metamorphosize,

 so he is growing a new home to crawl inside of and permeate

with webs of tenuous tunnels that will collapse against your teeth

like mineshafts. He will strike your head inside his rotten-core chrysalis

and you’ve never felt so alive as when you take a bite and find him

bisected there between your lips and spit him into the dirt like a curse.

Man and Man Made

diagnose this demon

one hand slashes the other

in a cerebral haze-creation

articulating aura, synthesizing

sentient sea spray, dripping

technological terror-transient

he who speaks but does not hear

cuts down his own masts;

burns his sails and

dances bacchanal around the blaze

to the song of a siren

putrid on the salty wind

syrup wet like the breath

of a thousand hellhounds

braying inside ancient eyes

blinding light infernal

walking plank tongue rigid, rotten

and diving into the frothing mirror


The Celebration of Hunger

know peace

in this savage kingdom

fueled, fed, fertilized

by impermanence

a fledgling sparrow

wings clipped

wheezing a song beneath

a nest

that was once his cradle

plunge a knife into your skull

and dream

part the lobes like

a gray, fleshy sea

until there is only a void

vacuous, vacuuming


Luke Usry is a writer from the Macon, GA area. He have released one collection of poems titled The Dandelion Killer, and his work has been featured in Flash Fiction Magazine.