Supporting Actor

By Nels Hanson

In a dozen blockbuster flicks I played
always the villain, the thief, swindler,

kidnapper, assassin. I made a perfect
heel, luckily, so in my off-screen life

I never felt compelled to steal or hurt,
to kill. Then last year, 2015, I couldn’t

beg a part to save my soul and before
long I turned antsy at home, plus low

on cash, alimony, two kids at college,
boy and girl. I realized I had by heart

nearly 25 great scenarios for brilliant
crimes only handsome stars crack by

fluke late in final reel. Heist, burglary,
insurance scam – I’m flush with roles,

paid off a mortgage and put in a pool,
doubt now I’ll ever return to pictures.


Nels Hanson grew up on a small farm in the San Joaquin Valley of California and has worked as a farmer, teacher, and contract writer/editor. His fiction received the San Francisco Foundation’s James D. Phelan Award and Pushcart nominations in 2010, 2012, and 2014. Poems appeared in Word Riot, Oklahoma Review, Pacific Review, and other magazines and received a 2014 Pushcart nomination, Sharkpack Review’s 2014 Prospero Prize, and 2015 and 2016 Best of the Net nominations.