R. A. Allen


There’s nothing like a lazy flyover to give
us a laugh. Up here with the birds,
our final minds gaze down to watch
headstone shadows grow from long at dawn,
to naught at noon, and back to long at dusk.
The lawnmowers pock and chip,
but we don’t care. Plastic flowers, hooray!
Friends and loved ones visit less and less,
and then not at all. Maybe they’re starting
to get the joke, to figure out we’re not down
there in those holes. Look up. We’re here—
fainter than the glow of a day moon,
more persistent than the stars.

R. A. ALLEN’s poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in the New York Quarterly, RHINO, Orbis, The Penn Review, The Los Angeles Review, Cloudbank, Alba, and in the anthology Celestial Musings. He has nominations for The Pushcart Prize and the Best of the Net 2020. His fiction has been published in The Literary Review, The Barcelona Review, PANK, The Los Angeles Review, and Best American Mystery Stories 2010, among others. He lives in Memphis, Tennessee.

Read more by R. A. Allen

Poem in B O D Y
Story in The Barcelona Review
Poem in The Penn Review
Poem in New Critique
Author’s Website