Logo, MacQueen's Quinterly
Listed at Duotrope
MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 12: March 2022
Prose Poem: 221 words
By Charles D. Tarlton

Honestly

 

For example, I could just tell the truth, admit how I used to keep answers to exam questions in my wallet and look at them in the bathroom during breaks, but tell it in such a way that everyone would suspect it wasn’t true. Or, I could lie about something so convincingly that everyone believed it. Suppose you were on your way out of the drug store and the guard hurries around the security gate and stops you just outside. “Let’s see what’s in the bag?” he says, and reaches for your purse. What if he were to find something suspicious there, a hairbrush still in its plastic package or one of those big bags of little Hershey bars? But, on the other hand, what if you refused, stood your ground, and waited for the police? This happened to my mother once, and she just broke down and cried, huge, gasping sobs, and the guard had to let her go.

Time hurries along, so fast it’s always 
yesterday, and you’re looking ahead trying 
to remember. 
	    Autumn’s come and gone, brittle red 
and yellow leaves wither on the brown lawn, 
coy summer makes its getaway, 
			     and you hardly noticed. 
I’d set up a string contraption around the days, 
so if one tried to get away unseen... 
				     a little bell would ring. 

Charles D. Tarlton
Issue 12, March 2022

is a retired university professor of political theory who lives in Old Saybrook, Connecticut with his wife, Ann Knickerbocker (an abstract painter), and a Standard Poodle named Nikki. He is the author of three books of prosimetra published by KYSO Flash Press: Touching Fire: New and Selected Ekphrastic Prosimetra (2018), Get Up and Dance (2019), and Carmody & Blight: The Dialogues (2019).

His most recent book, Peaches and Roses: Episodes in the Navajo Degradation, was released in January 2021 by Silver Bow Publishing (New Westminster, British Columbia). He also has a poetry e-chapbook published in the 2River series, La Vida de Piedra y de Palabra: Improvisations on Pablo Neruda’s Macchu Picchu; an experimental prosimetrum in Lacuna entitled Five Episodes in the Navajo Degradation; “The Rock in a Jar,” an extended prose poem in several parts in Gone Law 32; and “The Turn of Art,” a short prosimetrical drama pitting Picasso against Matisse, in Fiction International.

Tarlton has been writing poetry and flash fiction since 2006, and his work is published in numerous literary journals and magazines: Abramelin, Atlas Poetica, Barnwood, Blackbox Manifold (UK), Blue and Yellow Dog, Book Ends Review, Clackamas Literary Review, Contemporary Haibun Online, Cricket Online Review, Dark Matter, Fiction International, Haibun Today, Ilanot Review, Inner Art Journal, Innisfree Poetry Journal, Jack Magazine, KYSO Flash, Linden Avenue Literary Journal, London Grip, MacQueen’s Quinterly, Muse India, Palette Poetry, Peacock Journal, Prune Juice, Randomly Accessed Poetics, Rattle, Red Booth Review, Red Lights, Review Americana, Ribbons, Shampoo, Shot Glass, Simply Haiku, Six Minute Magazine, Sketchbook, Skylark, Spirit Wind Gallery, Tallow Eider Quarterly, The American Aesthetic, The Ekphrastic Review, The Houston Literary Review, tinywords, Tipton, Unbroken Journal, Undertow Tanka Review, and Ink, Sweat, and Tears.

More on the Web: By, About, and Beyond

Artifact With Steam (2019) by Ann Knickerbocker, ekphrastic tanka prose in the e-collection Get Up and Dance featured in KYSO Flash (Issue 12, Summer 2019)

Featured Author Charles D. Tarlton, with six of his ekphrastic tanka prose and an interview with Jack Cooper, in KYSO Flash (Issue 6, Fall 2016)

Notes for a Theory of Tanka Prose: Ekphrasis and Abstract Art, a scholarly paper by Tarlton residing in PDF at Ray’s Web; originally published in Atlas Poetica (Number 23, pages 87-95)

Three American Civil War Photographs: Ekphrasis by Tarlton in Review Americana (Spring 2016)

Simple Tanka Prose for the Seasons, a quartet by Tarlton in Rattle (Issue 47: Tribute to Japanese Forms, Spring 2015)

 
 
Copyright © 2019-2022 by MacQueen’s Quinterly and by those whose works appear here
Logo and website designed and built by Clare MacQueen; copyrighted © 2019-2022
⚡   Please report broken links to: MacQuinterly [at] gmail [dot] com   ⚡
At MacQ, we take your privacy seriously. We do not collect, sell, rent, or exchange your name and email address, or any other information about you, to third parties for marketing purposes. When you contact us, we will use your name and email address only in order to respond to your questions, comments, etc.