Let there be multiplication


What orientation / the middle of the road

point your compass / toward true failure

hovering god / your rating was very good

not excellent / not four stars vouched for

after six days this / a home away from home

unpracticed perfection / not recommended

by blurbing tourists / thread counts uncounted

average means comfort / a map says lie down

we all get run over / in the middle of the road

a frowning icon dreams of vengeance

vengeance is the next thousand pages

our bible had coupons / for earthly discounts

this hotel with its pools / heated watery pools

heated good and boiling / the people bleed

without purpose / then with purpose   

we are split into two / again and again

to multiply is to let there be division

a cell is an army / to destroy and to capture

our coordinates / and to split

we must check out


Let there be history


Cain and Abel / legally changed names

Two brothers and a notary public

Always and Never / Never and Always   

loosely translated / into the soil

Always never had a dream

Never always had a dream

the kids / busy with their squabbles

both brothers built / jealousy muscles

out of spare parts / and parts were spare, mister

fingers washed away / in candescent mist

pull those hairs out / sing worksongs higher

look at look at / all that leftover flesh

from the cleaving / let’s build a fort

Always / a corker / a lickity spitfire

Never / a cook / slow to marinade

ground swallows groveling / for crumbs

at the welcome table / indecent chirps

silenced with boots/ Always silencing

Never chirping / again and again

those dreams aren’t coming

true / Always always agrees

those dreams aren’t coming

Always always lies with vengeance

Never never lies in a fortress

a little bird / told history to change

the names back / but forgot why

the only evidence / some stone tablets

and a notary seal / barking the truth

from beyond the sea / endangered

by generations / hunting their pelts

and the monks are silent as canaries


JR Walsh was born in Syracuse, NY and lives in Boise, Idaho. He received his MFA in Creative Writing from Boise State University, where he now teaches English as a Second Language. He is a Fiction Editor at The Citron Review. His writing is found in many fine publications, such as Out of Stock, Juked, Grey Sparrow Journal, Alice Blue, Timshel, Esquire, and B O D Y. For more go to: itsjrwalsh.com.