Silent Film

Soft light through leaves, some kids beside a car
flirting. Think of this after it ends,
after you watch the slapstick fade to war—

pilots, bullets, blood, and one last kiss
as death glides in on strings. The future lends
the past its battered light. Come back to this:

his hand along the roadster's chassis, the way
the engine stammers like a man who opens
his mouth before he knows what he has to say.

Patrick Ryan Frank is the author of How the Losers Love What's Lost, which won the 2010 Intro Prize from Four Way Books; and The Opposite of People, to be published by Four Way Books in 2015. He is the recipient of fellowships from the James A. Michener Center for Writers, the Massachusetts Cultural Council, the Vermont Studio Center, the Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild, and the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts. He was recently a Fulbright Fellow to Iceland. (

Boxcar Poetry Review - ISSN 1931-1761