John Patrick Robbins

by Arthur Graham on January 6, 2018

John Patrick Robbins is a full time drinker and barroom poet who writes often about the people who surround him. His work has appeared here at Horror Sleaze Trash, Red Fez, Spill The Words, Your One Phone Call, The Outlaw Poetry Network, and Inbetween Hangovers. As always, his work pulls no punches and is usually written while very hungover.


This Wasn’t Paris

She screamed, as always, fed up with my vices, and that I simply didn’t indulge her rage once only fueled her more.

“You son of a bitch! Do you not feel anything?” she asked.

She was full of shit and mock concern she usually added for good measure.

“Yes, I feel all sorts of things,” I replied as I lit my cigarette from the candle that had been placed upon the table (I’m guessing) to set the mood, but honestly, I didn’t think they had a scented candle called ‘tantrum throwing bitch’ on the market.

“Yeah? What do you feel besides the need for another drink?”

“Sweetheart, there is so little you truly seem to know about me. Now have a drink with me and relax.”

“All you ever want to do is drink or fuck, you lazy bastard!”

“Well… what better thing to do is there than drink or fuck? You have something against orgasms, I take it?”

“You don’t really want me, it’s strictly for the sex, you jerk.”

“Well, I enjoy having sex with you. By the way, your ass looks marvelous in that dress, my dear, any chance I can see you out of it?” I said as I kicked back the last of my whiskey.

“You’re a pig. You don’t need a real woman, you just need a whore.”

“Are they not real women too, sweetheart?” I asked, laughing as I reached for the decanter to pour myself another drink.

She looked at me in disgust. “You’re a drunk!”

“Yes,” I replied. “And your point?”

“It’s all one big joke with you. Nothing is serious, you’ll never want to clean your act up. Settle down, give me a kid!”

“Well, I would have a while back, sugar, but they all run so fast I just can’t seem to catch one for you.”

“Fuck you ! You ignorant son of a bitch!” she said, as I let her go into yet another hissy fit.

I flicked my ashes into a wine glass on the table.

“Hey! What the hell do you think you’re doing?”

“Most, I believe most, call it smoking my dear.”

“That’s a good wine glass. What if I had wanted a drink of wine?”

“My dear, do you not know me that well? Wine is for painters and women or old gay men pretending to be straight. I drink whiskey. That is it.”

“Yeah, and whatever else happens to be around.”

“Yes indeed, I do.”

She sat at the table, looking to me more as some sort of bad child than her equal.
“Why the hell do I stay with you”?

“Good question, sweetheart,” I said as I began to stand. “You know I have many feelings; in fact, right now I’m going to have to run because of one.”

“Yeah? What feeling is that?” she said in mock interest.

“Well, I’m feeling like I have to piss. Excuse me.”

She said nothing as I left the room.
When I returned she was gone.

So I guess, to my question of seeing her out of that dress?
Well, it was a no.

She was gone, and I simply drank till the night bled into the day.

Some people truly need to find a sense of humor.

She yearned for the love of romance novels, not the reality of its existence.

And she yearned for the nightlife of Paris.

As the candle slowly died I watched the sun creep through the small kitchen window.

Outside the whores yelled at passing cars, and the city breathed life once again.

One thing for sure.
This truly wasn’t Paris.


Not Every Angel Sits Atop a Tree

The world was closed for the day. Well, it was really just the liquor store.
But when you’re a professional drinker, that was your world.

And this Christmas was looking mighty dry.

Everything was shut down. I was alone, but that was by choice. But alone and sober was something far worse than alone with my favorite spirits.

The music played and I simply went through the pleasures of withdrawal.

A few cold beers in the fridge my only companions through this mess.

I never liked beer. It tastes like shit and took damn near a case to give you a buzz.

The world was silent. It was sick how one day we showed kindness then returned to being the selfish bastards we truly were. Well, most of us that is.

In the street people struggled as they did in life.

For most every day was a fight no matter the decorations.

I hated holidays but I kept it to myself.
A happy recluse so long as I had enough fire water to see me through.

Marty had really fucked me over last night.

“Come on Frank, let’s just have one.”
Marty was a first class bum but a fun time and a old friend.

We poured the drinks laughed about old times talked about women we had loved and joked about how we lost them just the same.

Marty could drink, especially when it wasn’t on his dime.

And before I knew the well was dry and my old friend had stranded me in the fucking desert without a drop to drink.

Thats what friends are for, I suppose.
The phone rang and it was Allison.

“Merry Christmas, Frank! So how’s my favorite grinch?”

“Sober, sweetheart, and how are you sugar?”

“What, you finally get on the wagon? I can’t believe it.”

I laughed.
“More like Marty came by last night, and now I’m hungover without a hope in sight.”

“Awww, poor baby, do you need mama to bring you some Christmas cheer?”

“Well, the place is a wreck and I’m not much of a host, but if you want an unjolly fat man’s lap to sit in, I would be happy to put you on the guest list.”

Allison laughed and said she was on her way. She said she was bringing some booze.

She was a great friend and although certainly not miss right.
But she was damn sure right for now .

It took her no time being the roads were for once not congested .

I had cleaned the best I could, made my place look more like a car accident than a trainwreck.

I met her at the door.
She looked good and smelled even better.

“Fuck, Frank, you really look rough.”

“Well I got into a fight with a fat man last night, thought it was Santa, turned out to be me. That will be the last time I look in the mirror again.”

“You’re worse than a damn woman when it comes to running yourself down, you know that?”

“Well sugar, since the divorce, someone has to take up the slack of running me down since the bitch left.”

“I swear you hate women, Frank,” Allison said, laughing.

“That’s not true, I like you don’t I?”

“That’s just because I have booze, you prick.”

“Sweetheart, it’s not just because of the booze. You have so many other qualities I truly admire.”

“Like what?”

“Well, a vagina of course, silly girl.”

Allison busted up laughing.

“Your such a dick! Go sit down and let me mix us some drinks.”

I wasn’t about to argue with that statement. I sat back in the recliner and Allison soon joined me, handing me a drink as she sat upon my lap.

The drink was strong and good.

It would be the first of many that day.

She felt good, and for one night I was something I often wasn’t.


We joked, flirted, and worked our way into the bedroom later that night, blissful as two kids unwrapping presents beneath a tree.

She was perfection in the emptiness of a holiday I truly did despise.

Not every angel sits placed atop a tree.


Frank Murphy.



Previous post:

Next post: