Sara Clancy

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Roadhouse: a found poem of movie dialogue

That gal’s got entirely too many brains
to have an ass like that. She left me, though.
Found somebody even uglier than she was. Bad
element over there. People preach to me about love.
Just a little mistake, that's all. We can be gone
by dawn, never see this place again.

You fired the bartender. He was skimming.
You got quite a little enterprise going here.
It was a good night. You got insurance,
don't you? Nobody died. Life could be
a dream, sweetheart. Let's crank that thing
up and head down the road.

Hey, shut up, shithead. He's my only sister's
son, and if he doesn't have me, who's he got?
I swear to God, boss, I'm sorry. I hate a man
who can't admit he's wrong. Memphis has nothing
to do with it. You bleed too much. You got no
endurance. Don't tell me what I need!
Pain don’t hurt. Pain don’t hurt.

Triptych at Tacoma Group Health


The waiting room is a hellscape
of exhaustion and unwashed hair.
Beside the aquarium, its angelfish sliding
in and out of another world that glows
blue, a receptionist demands
that the girl in red slippers explain
her missed appointment.


Inside the office
conversation fires past itself
and floats into the pharmacy
down the hall. Interrogatories
shift the burden of healing
to the wet cedar trees outside.
You tell me it has always
been this way.


On the car ride home we worry
about the co-pay, wonder if we should
have written our questions into a ballad
set to the muddy half arc of windshield
wipers. A chorus that repeats your plea
to see an end to this climate of frog-song
and rain.

Sara Clancy a Philadelphia transplant to the Desert Southwest. She is an Associate Editor for Good Works Review and, among other places, her poems have appeared in The Linnet's WingsThe Avatar Review, Crab Creek Review, The Madison Review, The Smoking Poet, Verse Wisconsin, Main Street Rag, Antiphon, Turtle Island Quarterly, Antiphon and Houseboat, where she was a featured poet.