The American Journal of Poetry
"Strong Rx Medicine"®


Patrick Moloney


--the act of smelling books, especially as a way of getting a ‘fix’ from the aroma of old tomes.



Dickens - Oiled factory gears, 12 year old boy body odor, worn wet cotton overcoats, talcum powder, damp cobblestone, fresh parchment, prison mold, dry rot wood, tubercular lung waste, matted felt, yellowed feet fresh out of boots, boot black, English Breakfast Tea with too much sugar.

Dickinson – Pressed violets, ozone, sherry, pressed white cotton under dresses and curled tresses, a stone garden bench, polished canopy beds, warm garden, a bit apple, a warm dog by a cottage fireplace, black cherry marmalade, pulpy paper and watered ink, vanilla coffin lining.

Bukowski – Beer farts, sweated cotton t shirts, flophouse sun regret and cheap latex chipped paint radiators, nicotine fingers, licked postage stamps, maraschino cherries and bar back bourbon, cigarette kisses, and post fuck damp mattress.

Oliver - Lilli pad pond, wet alfalfa, down feathers, cracked maple doors, after rain peonies, lemon poppy-seed muffins, dandelion fluffed air, a strand of just washed hair, birch walking stick, the first opening of a journal, a walking shoe clodded with clay, cardamom incense.

Wilde – Air festooned with rose petals and methane, clove perfumed cuffs, empty church pews, Irish tea with Irish whiskey and honey, velour parlor pants, sweat at the nape of a gentlemen’s neck, recreational tobacco, votive candle wax, pigeons bathing in a silted French fountain, a death in a small rented room.

Hemingway – Salt air, gun powder smoke, pipe bowl dew, Pelican belly, fox hole courage and fear flop sweat, Jeep oil, Old Spice or is it Aqua Velva, Lion dung and dry sage earth, belched brandy, bait, boat bottom water, cracked leather boots and scratched Khaki. Sagging typewriter ribbon, dry blood on a pine floor.




PATRICK MOLONEY is a writer living in Oak Park Ill, with his wife Delia and son Riley. He's held some 12 plus jobs in his life including miner, fireworks choreographer, Producer of live shows based on superheroes, and VP of one of the World's Largest Film and Entertainment companies. He has been published in, The Foliate Oak, The Nervous Breakdown and The Whistling Fire.



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