The Shine Journal

Exceptional Flash, Poetry, Art and Photography!


Dear John


Parker Tettleton



two runaways stood
in silence their
.22’s tucked under
their beds one green
dumpster the nearest
refuge ten feet
in front of the dog
a rottweiler, one
told the other
after stars and
fathers began
to descend

there were years
of days and nights
on Terral Island
a weedy front yard
field for summer
football basketball
year-round frozen
or missing nets
nothing could
whistle sweat
and shit-talk
back inside

the younger
of the two came
back for a girl
I’ve never met
her middle name
of Dixie is all
I remember from
a black-white
clipping my
mother carried
five hundred and
fifty odd miles

the only house
party at 1103
was a hasty
affair the private
school kids brought
their smokes and
beers we watched
a blonde and a
brunette’s sloppy kisses
on the living room
floor I thought
the hole put in

my bedroom
door was for
one of those girls
it kept me
safe in my room
only talking to
fifths the carpet
lost its teeth
and every so
often i’d look
up to see you


BIO: Parker Tettleton is an English major at Kennesaw State University. His work is featured in or forthcoming from Short, Fast and Deadly, Soundzine, The Chimaera, Right Hand Pointing and GRASP, among others. He blogs at

Motivation: "Dear John" is an ode to my best friend and part-time neighbor growing up - upon learning of his recent engagement.

Click the pics to meet the members!


Email TSJ: Editor: Pamela Tyree Griffin

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