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February 19, 2024

A Single Grey Waffle Shirt

By Ryan Quinn Flanagan

A Single Grey Waffle Shirt

He sticks a needle in his arm
and draws blood.

I watch his eyes roll
like the windows of a losing
slot machine.

Sitting there
on his apartment floor
in the near dark.

Him, in three sweaters
even though it is late summer.
Encased like some sweaty mummified after

I grab a beer from his fridge
and head down to the shared laundry
in the basement.

Waiting on a single grey waffle shirt
coming back from the dead.

We used to be friends.
Now, there is the needle.

And that pillow I placed under his head
before I took the two flights

Old habits don't die until bad ones do.

A wiry blue basket over the dryer
and this casual way I sit on the floor.

A woman comes in to check on the washer.
Gives me the stink eye before disappearing
with all my cares.

Article © Ryan Quinn Flanagan. All rights reserved.
Published on 2020-09-21
Image(s) are public domain.
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