Poems from the Bargain Bin

by Ryan Hilary

image of hollow toy baby head

I notice in pretty restaurants,
Erotic games and children’s toys;
The flakes of my disease.

For I am often baroque with my verbiage,
Stacking too many too high,
Too little too low.

My pulse lives in words,
Though my spirits rise with wine,
Because I am weak and lack in wealth
Come from a quiet family,
And have not suffered enough.

Often before an altar of electric light,
Working upon plastic papyrus,
I wonder if I tug as hard at the seams of others
As I do my own.

When stung by their sadness,
When retching at their ruptures,
I touch bruises, or scrape
The inner rawness
Of women and men
Who I love from afar,
But detest in intimacy

Then alone in their pain;
I find I am a stranger to my own.


Ryan Hilary  recently graduated from Union Theological Seminary in New York. His cherished but impractical M.A. is in ethics and theodicy—defending divinity from accusations of malice. In other words, the problem of Evil, or more subtly put: making sense of suffering. These issues inform his writing. Although not a Christian, Ryan is sometimes honest. He was born in Belfast, raised in London, and put through the wringer in New York. He received his B.A. from Vassar College, despises writing about himself in the third person and thinks that if we take anything too seriously we shall all go mad.

5 Responses to “Poems from the Bargain Bin”

  1. […] Hilary says in a few spare words what so many of us so often feel. Junk is proud to present, Poems from the Bargain Bin. Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInMorePrintEmailRedditDiggStumbleUponLike this:LikeBe the first to […]

  2. fragile tears…

    […]Poems from the Bargain Bin « junk[…]…

  3. Are you calling my poem “junk?” If so, why? Not in hostility, just curious.

  4. Hi Ryan, Junk is the name of the journal. We took it for our name because it speaks to the unnamed, complicated stuff inside many (most) of us that’s hard to share, but that must be shared, if we’re going to reach out and connect with one another. While this stuff might be difficult to name, we know it when we find it, especially when we find it in memoir, and certainly in a poem as wonderful as Poems from the Bargain Bin. We love your work.

  5. […] Hilary, a previous Junk contributor, is experimenting with a blog that we think is very interesting. Some have even described it as a […]

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