Biography of Nick Flynn
Nick Flynn (born 1960) is an American writer, playwright, and poet. His most recent publication is a play, Alice Invents a Little Game and Alice Always Wins (Faber & Faber, 2008). His most recent book is a memoir, Another Bullshit Night in Suck City, (W.W. Norton, 2004). He has published two collections of poetry: Blind Huber, and Some Ether, which won the inaugural PEN/Joyce Osterweil Award and was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. Further honors include a 2001 Guggenheim Fellowship, a 2001 Amy Lowell Poetry Travelling Scholarship, and the 1999 Discovery/The Nation Award for his poem, Bag of Mice, about his mother's suicide.
Flynn's works have appeared in The New Yorker, The Nation, Fence, The New York Times, and The Paris Review. He was born and grew up in Scituate, Massachusetts, south of Boston. His parents divorced when he was young and his mother committed suicide when he was 22. He drifted through several jobs before starting work at a homeless shelter in Boston, where at age twenty-seven, he met his estranged, homeless father for the first time. Flynn earned an Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from New York University, and teaches part-time at The University of Houston Creative Writing Program. His long-time partner is actress Lili Taylor, with whom he shares a home in New York.
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Nick Flynn Poems
Bag Of Mice
I dreamt your suicide note was scrawled in pencil on a brown paperbag, & in the bag were six baby mice. The bag opened into darkness,
I want to erase your footprints from my walls. Each pillow is thick with your reasons. Omens
Cartoon Physics, Part 1
Children under, say, ten, shouldn't know that the universe is ever-expanding, inexorably pushing into the vacuum, galaxies
I go back to the scene where the two men embrace & grapple a handgun at stomach level between them. They jerk around the apartment like that
Hover the imagined center, our tongues grew long to please it, licking
It nests in the hollow of my pelvis, I carry it with both hands, as if offering my stomach, as if it were pulling me forward. At night the sun leaks from it, it turns cold, I sleep with it
You Asked How (Formerly Even Now She Is ...
At the end there were straws in her glove compartment, I'd split them open to taste the familiar bitter residue, near the end I ate all her Percodans, hungry to know
Bees may be trusted, always, to discover the best, nay, the only human, solution. Let me cite
Alan Dugan Telling Me I Have A Problem W...
He reads my latest attempt at a poem and is silent for a long time, until it feels like that night we waited for Apollo, my mother wandering in and out of her bedroom, asking,
My Mother Contemplating Her Gun
One boyfriend said to keep the bullets locked in a different room.
Petals on a river, a tree in blossom, one pink bud—unopened—falls
If This is Your Final Destination
They say you are made of clouds, they say you are made of feathers, they say you are everywhere or nowhere—we know you are both. Our flight
Elsewhere, Mon Amour
Leaning from the platform, waiting for a glimmer to braid the rails
Cathedral of Salt
Beneath all this I'm carving a cathedral of salt. I keep
I want to erase your footprints
from my walls. Each pillow
is thick with your reasons. Omens
fill the sidewalk below my window: a woman
in a party hat, clinging
to a tin-foil balloon. Shadows
creep slowly across the tar, someone yells, "Stop!"