Embrace Noir

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
holding on to each other, their cheeks

almost touching. One is shirtless, the other
wears a suit, the one in the suit came in through a window

to steal documents or diamonds, it doesn't matter anymore
which, what's important is he was found

& someone pulled a gun, and now they are holding on,
awkwardly dancing through the room, upending

a table of small framed photographs. A chair
topples, Sinatra's band punches the air with horns, I

lean forward, into the screen, they are eye-to-eye,
as stiff as my brother & me when we attempt

to hug. Soon, the gun fires and the music
quiets, the camera stops tracking and they

relax, shoulders drop, their jaws go slack
& we are all suspended in that perfect moment

when no one knows who took the bullet--
the earth spins below our feet, a blanket of swallows

changes direction suddenly above us, folding
into the rafters of a barn, and the two men

no longer struggle, they simply stand in their wreckage
propped in each other's arms.

by Nick Flynn

Comments (7)

I enjoyed this story, it is a scene we have seen many times but now we see it through another viewer's eyes and what a difference that makes. The closure to this is absolutely perfect- - - -] and the two men no longer struggle, they simply stand in their wreckage propped in each other's arms
The suspense, the action ans the final scene have come alive through the graphic details in the poem. I really enjoyed it and appreciate the skill of the poet to recreate a scene from the movie. Thanks.
Interesting poem. I really like Noir movies.
I like it suspense...nice work
Wreckage! ! Stealing will never bring us peace. Nice work.
See More