Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The Ghost Outside in the Hallway

author's note:

Unlike the ghost in this story...

...apparently, spirits may listen and take heed.

A friend once lived in a haunted apartment.  His sister visited; she slept on the couch.

When she woke one night to see the ghost sitting beside her, she told it, "Get out of here!"

And so the ghost left.


I can barely hear her murmurs
though she transients right outside--I strain to listen
because she also seems to speak to me:
You’ve made it, she says,
                                       you’re home free--

How can she know the answer
yet still be lost?
I suppose I could ask myself
the same question--
only rarely can I accept
my better perspective--

even though, like her, I want so much to believe--

so much that sometimes in the darkest hours
my desire creates overwhelming desperation
and again I feel compelled to try to get through:
“Let go," I tell her, "Let go
           of what you do not need--
                   let go.”

But though I whisper, I doubt she hears.
Anyway, why should she feel my urgency?--
I live in time; she does not.

But because my stubborn hunger
assures me (somewhat arrogantly)
that I can free us both
I persist in these attempts
to communicate.

We all seem to need ten
or ten million lifetimes
to adjust
to life on dry land.

© 2011, Michael R. Patton
myth steps

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