August 2007

John Thomas Murphy


John Thomas Murphy teaches high school English and Creative Writing in Westchester County, NY. His work has appeared in The Chronogram, Promise, JMWW, The Great Kills Review, Urban Graffiti, and The Poet's Cut, among other publications. He is currently seeking a publisher for his novel, Pigtown, and is also working on another novel that he is keeping tightly under wraps.
Summer In Griswold Heights, Troy, NY: What Keisha Remembers    

A slab of ice cream now dried on her chin.
The ring-a-ding of the ice cream truck's bell.
The poom-poom of basketball on cement.
Sweat drops tripping over her nappy braids.

Misty stomping through glass. Bluish blood.
Tre, nine, saying he's thirteen.
Pedro backhanding Tre. Blood seeping from Tre.
Fake cop. Kids yelling "2.5" and "pig."

The "you reek" she barks at drunk Uncle Sid.
Bikes: everywhere, some racing, some dawdling.
Nightfall. The droid voice from talking at the fan.
Mama's kissy-nose tuck-in. Heat from the fan.

Sirens. Sirens. Sirens. Sirens. Sirens.
Sirens of heat. Sirens of sweat.
Sirens of cockroaches. Ants. Ladybugs.
Worms. Spiders. Lots of spiders.



John Thomas Murphy: Poetry
Copyright ©2007 The Cortland Review Issue 36The Cortland Review