Contact The Author: rdlbarton@gmail.com

Ron. Lavalette's work has appeared in these fine publications:



Thursday, March 12, 2020

Imaginary Friend

Tiny Molecules (Online) March 2020


I had an imaginary friend once but, frankly, he was a real jerk. I could barely stand him. He was never really there for me when I needed him, and he only showed up when I was buying an ice cream cone or hooking up with slutty Maria down the block. I always had to buy a second cone or a second or third condom, sometimes both, sometimes more, depending on how things were going. Going for him, I should say. The guy had some appetite.

The idiot could absolutely not remember my mother’s birthday, and he always had something pointless he needed me to do when it came around. I always regretted giving in to him. It’s like he just didn’t give a crap. Same deal with my Exes. All three of them. Look at me now.

Time to go to work,” I’d say. "Time to go fishing," he’d reply, wearing that vapid, shiftless grin. It was like he had some sort of hypnotic power. And don’t get me started on the whole money thing. On top of the lost jobs and un-repaid loans, there’s a mountain of bills he talked me into letting slip into collections, the trunkful of parking tickets, and the boingity-boingity rubber checks bouncing all over town so fast you’ve got to duck one to avoid the other.

I haven’t seen him in a while, but I know he’s out there, just waiting until I get my head above water, maybe get a new girlfriend. He’ll show up. Jerk.


Friday, March 06, 2020

Altered Itinerary

Red Wolf Journal (Online) March 2020
Red Wolf Journal (Online Anthology "Journeying") Sept 2020

He drives an hour north to
Montgomery’s famous scones;
decides to limit himself to a
single scone and a coffee
because, even as he settles in,
he thinks about the bar at
Positive Pie down in Hardwick,
remembers they have Switchback
on tap, remembers how dark
and cool one end of the bar
can be; how conducive to
journal work that — somehow,
some time later — ends up published.

He drives an hour south and
drives another hour south.

Thursday, March 05, 2020

She Would Have Been Proud

50-Word Stories (Online) March 2020

I hadn’t planned on speaking
at my mother’s memorial service,
but my equally reticent siblings looked to me
when the minister issued the invitation.
I had no script nor practiced comments,
but in no time at all the entire congregation
was rolling on the aisles.
Later, everyone thanked me profusely.

The Quest

Red Wolf Journal (Online) March 2020
Red Wolf Journal (Online Anthology "Journeying") Sept 2020

I’ve circled this damned planet
a gazillion times already, just trying
to wake up where the sun comes up,
just trying to find that spot.

No matter how far east I travel,
I go to bed confident that, this time,
I’ve finally found my Mecca;
that the sun will rise at the foot of my bed.

No dice. Ever. Every day’s the same.
One time I saw it come up just behind
a Brooklyn high-rise. Not much later
it was the Eiffel Tower. Yeah, right.

Maybe I should change my ways;
maybe start chasing the sunset instead.
I’m older now. Maybe I should be wiser.
I’m pretty sure it sets just west of here.

Wednesday, March 04, 2020

Last Call

detritus (Online) March 2020


Hello she said
her voice too sweet
I’m sorry
if I woke you up
...


It’s okay
he replied
considering their recent history
I’m glad you called.


Listen
he said
and hung up the phone
softly