Ryan Quinn Flanagan

Watering Hole 

He is standing in the middle of the street.
In very short shorts from the 1970s.

Emptying a purple watering can over a pronounced pot hole.
A light sprinkle at first, then he tips the can.

Watering this hole caved right out of the pavement.
That cars slow and weave to avoid.

I wonder what he is hoping to grow.
Hopefully not another child.

He already has too many of them.
The child services lady keeps sniffing around.

Like she remembers those old scratch and sniff books
that made a tire yard smell like bubble gum.

I loved those books.
Sitting in the basement crawlspace
surrounded by panicked silverfish 
and old potatoes with roots long as 
some city busses.

Perhaps that explains some of the disconnect.
Mine and his in this more immediate of slash pieces.

This middle-aged man who remembers to shave.
Watering the street in a black wife beater
that has seen better days. 

A scarred left knee from an old surgery.
And always the stupid purple watering can.

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