How The Losers Love What’s Lost
Patrick Ryan Frank
Winner of the Four Way Books Intro Prize
“Ghosts”, from How The Losers Love What’s Lost:
Each of them missed his moment, felt it pass like a body moving through an unlit room. The grandfather clock clicks through the minutes, bangs the hours, and they, in their old-fashioned hats and dull black jackets, pace the upstairs halls, practicing the words they should have said: another Stop, another I'll sober up. And in their murky heads, they run through all the cues they missed, the marks they didn't hit. Some times—on certain weeknights when it's rained— they gather in attics, unused nurseries, and they rehearse like actors. Together, they sit and thumb their scripts, dog-eared and yellow. The play is titled Living, and it starts in the dark with a knock on a heavy door. Then, a voice: :Darling, darling, I have something to say.