Ossuary by Garrett Phelan

like bamboo in wind. Wings of cicada. Baseball bats in a bag. Stones. Fingered rosary beads. Marbles in my pocket. All the soreness of crow call or of blood stopping up the wound. My mother’s eyes. All the gray in granite. Shoebox tissues. Pens in a book bag. And a branch scratches the window. Fingernails tapping on the counter. Chance shaking in my hand. The turn of the page in the NYT. All the bones gathered together, stuffed into a small stone vessel. The weight or the touch of ink on skin, a tattoo or flu overwhelming the heart. Or, a car speeding through a red light. Heavy bass thumping. All 50’s rock and roll spilling into bone.


Garrett Phelan is the author of one poetry book and two micro-chapbooks His poems have appeared in a variety of publications including Potomac Review, Word Riot, Off the Coast, Ekphrastic Review and Leaping Clear. He teaches poetry in a Connecticut maximum security prison. He is a Pushcart Prize nominee.


Photo by Kaitlyn Jameson