Two Flash by Brad Rose

Naked to the Waist

Click to hear the author read this poem

It wasn’t summer, it was heaven. I’d always wondered if death and life were the same? Wondered if angels got exhausted from flapping their wings? Sis said it wasn’t true that Eve was made of earth and bone and the salty backwater of the south Mississippi. I told her Adam loved Eve, the way Pa loved Ma. She asked me if that was before or after they were cast out of the garden? I said “both.”

The smooth warm ooze of the Mississippi, God in that sunlight. Pa, lost in last Spring’s flood.

Painting by Teresa Elliot

Stars and Bars

Told her I had hundreds of thousands stuffed under there. If she ever got into trouble, or needed it to get me out of jail, she should climb in, and with a good butcher knife, just start hacking.

“Don’t worry,” I told her, “you’ll find it.”

Course, the folks in town, the police, everyone at the Hexacostal Church of the Holy Penetrator, just hated that I’d discovered how to follow the doll house assembly instructions that came in the box. The women looked at me like I’d chloroformed their daughters. The men wondered how a guy so ugly and so dumb could manage it. Most folks wondered, What’s she doing with him, anyway—that broken down ol’ sofa of a man, wobbling around on only one good leg.

Her skin is smooth as still pond water, her face prettier than Taylor Swift’s. I hope that little twotimer doesn’t mind when she finds out the cash is all Confederate.

Photo by Elene Usdin

Brad Rose was born and raised in southern California, and lives in Boston. He is a 2015 Pushcart Prize nominee, in fiction. Brad’s poetry and fiction have appeared in The Baltimore Review, San Pedro River Review, Off the Coast, Third Wednesday, Boston Literary Magazine, Right Hand Pointing, The Potomac, Santa Fe Literary Review, The Common Line Journal, and other publications. Links to his poetry and fiction can be found at: bradrosepoetry.blogspot.com. His chapbook of miniature fiction, Coyotes Circle the Party Store, can be read at: sites.google.com/site/bradroserhpchapbook. Audio recordings of a selection of Brad’s published poetry can be heard at: soundcloud.com/bradrose1.