Nick Flynn
The Unclaimed

In every city there’s a room


lined with boxes of

the unclaimed, each the size of


half a loaf of

good bread. My friend collects these


boxes, which he then

brings home & opens & empties


the ash into a bucket to

mix with a medium to make another


painting. One


box is smaller, only as big as a few sticks

of butter, five days old


typed out on the label. My friend

does not even open this box, he


cannot, it is heavier than you

might imagine. Stardust, he


simply places it in the center of

a large white canvas.



Found In Volume 48, No. 05
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Nick Flynn
About the Author

Nick Flynn is the author of several books of poetry including Blind Huber (2002), The Captain Asks for a Show of Hands (2011), and My Feelings (2015). He has also written several memoirs, including Another Bullshit Night in Suck City (2004), Being Flynn (2005), The Ticking is the Bomb (2010), and The Reenactments (2013); and the play Alice Invents a Little Game and Alice Always Wins (2008). His book The Ticking Is the Bomb: A Memoir of Bewilderment (2010) addresses the Abu Ghraib scandal.