Joan McNerney

Joan McNerney’s poetry has been included in numerous literary magazines such as Seven Circle Press, Dinner with the Muse, Moonlight Dreamers of Yellow Haze, Blueline, and Halcyon Days.  Four Bright Hills Press Anthologies, several Poppy Road Review Journals, and numerous Kind of A Hurricane Press Publications have accepted her work.  She has four Best of the Net nominations and her latest titles are The Musein Miniature, Love Poems for Michael, and At Work, all available on


Wearing designer clothes
and sleek jewelry,
she traipses along willy nilly
throwing  golden kismet
wherever  whimsy calls.

Some think luck chooses their 
goodness or hard work. Perhaps
they were blessed at birth?

The wise know luck wears a 
visor tripping over herself
favoring  both mean and lazy.

Luck has a toxic twin called 
Misfortune covered with
gloom.  Dressed in dusty
rags, stupor-like he selects 
unsuspecting victims.

Stomping helter skelter
clutching the throats of
both meek and mighty.   

Everybody who gets in his way
will be pushed down, their
muffled cries barely heard.

Bar Fly

At Jewel Box Tavern
lights are always dim
so you can’t look closely.

Wearing stiletto heels, she 
traipses along followed by 
billows of cheap perfume. 

Dressed in a second skin of
electric blue velveteen
covered with silver glitz.

She looks for a mark, some 
clown who carries thick wads 
of cash and a stash of coke.

Tapping the shoulder of 
the willing joker with her long 
lacquered fingernails. 

First she must meet him
in the back alley to pay up
with her pound of flesh. 

Showing its age, her face 
is coated by pastes, crèmes, 
thick rouge, blazing red lipstick.

Her brown eyes encrusted with
liners, mascara and shadow
revealed a certain sadness,

Secreted in the dark and dank  
women’s room, she snorts 
that magical white powder.

Nothing matters now.
There is no despair
only this embrace of bliss.


Full of himself flaunting
his black leather jacket
covered with silver studs. 

Bling hangs from his bulging neck.
Flashy zircons, cheap cologne,
tattoos, piercings, purple hair.

Puffed up, he struts across alleys.
Headlight eyes scoping 
each corner searching prey.

Pushing down anything 
in his way.  Sniffing rear
doors, sniffing out death. 

His hands move like claws 
through shadows with
crooked nails buffed blue.

Lugging a bag of tricks loaded 
with brass knuckles,  chains,
zip guns, switchblade  knives.

Opening his cavern mouth, 
smacking wide lips, he drains
a cool cocktail of ruby red blood.

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