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Featured Poet: Rick Kearns

Raven Rabbit Ram is proud to publish three pieces from Rick Kearns. This is the first publication for "Killer Cold" and "Artists for Spare Change." "Doc and Ellen" can be found in the 2018 chapbook The Dead Go Swimming.

Rick Kearns (aka Kearns-Morales) is a writer, teacher, and musician of Puerto Rican and European heritage from Harrisburg, Pa. His poems have appeared in over 70 literary publications, most in the US but a few in Ireland, UK, Puerto Rico, and Argentina. He was named Poet Laureate of Harrisburg in 2014. Kearns is also a freelance journalist. His author’s website is:

Killer Cold

Back in those days

I worked frontline

mh emergency crew

called in when mostly

poor or working class

people were snapping


had a psychotic break


they didn't want to handle


it was a day like this

killer cold, they said

I got the call

church across the street

trembling voice telling me

"he's just laying there"

and he was

older homeless guy

stretched out on the



who didn't quite

make it to the church's

backdoor the night before

I never found out

if they ever located family

I always think of him

when I hear the phrase

killer cold

I remember leaning down

and patting his shoulder

kneeling by him for a minute

killer cold

only happens

when no one else

who cares

is there

Artists For Spare Change

the young ladies

of Avignon

move slowly

down the stairs

and onto the square

by the hairy saxman

jamming on 2nd Street where

the old Spot used to be.

When they tore down

the original Spot

they discovered a

circle of grease with

a diameter of 30 feet.

Scientists and archaeologists

were called in to create

The Allnight Diner Museum.

Shopping cart Mary

was "re-located" to a

garage on the hill and

all the pawn shops

and adult theaters

were torn down to increase

the possibility of

proactive synchronicity.

Van Gogh's crows

fly en masse

out of windows of the

abandoned steel plant

downriver from

aggressive toupees and

their touch scream uphones

and artisanal gas chambers.

Rats, opossums, and ghosts

speaking 10 different languages

scamper and fly around

the old steel mill

still unreachable to the

robocalling vulture fund managers

who are eager to eat your children

and accept your master race card.

Doc and Ellen

the old lady is still there

sitting on a porch swing

long gone

smoking virginia slims