Sunday, October 11, 2009

the open window ~ emily howard

Quiet now after the wedding.
Pouring rain I am still sitting fancy
Katie’s ghost is smoking on the front stoop
I won’t let her in although
I would really like a cigarette.

Apparently ghost love is all I know
For example, I love a ghost across the ocean
He loves another ghost, well his wife really
but ghost nonetheless-he sends me memories of her
line by line. I don’t really mind although
I still would like a cigarette as I read.

My brother died and now he’s a tree frog somewhere
Is this relevant? I wear his shirt sometimes.
My ocean ghost sent me one that looks just like it.
I’m not sure this is relevant.
If Michael weren’t a tree frog, I’d say he should join Katie on the porch.
but they wouldn’t necessarily get along.

Tonight was nice. I should ask my therapist
Why I hate weddings so much or is it
just a resentment of those who do not live ghost lives
But I think maybe everyone lives ghost lives.
Still they are pert and neat in their barriers
between here and there. And me,
I danced, fleshily, in a séance shawl
and felt solid at least in my whirling-they smiled at me
It was nice. Tiny nervous Thea left to go smoke.
I almost went with her.

In the story I read
one woman left her French doors open
every autumn so as to let in the long dead
Hunting party of her sons
And through the doors they came.
I read it, eating dried dates, under my covers
with a flashlight. We had similar doors in my house.
downstairs, where Michael sat watching television.
Because he was there , it didn’t frighten me
But I also wanted to be frightened.

I almost wish I knew what I am getting at.
And yes I see my lined face in the computer screen
ghostly, but so what? Hardly the point I’d say
but maybe the arc. The window is open and rain blows in
Michael is a tree frog. Katie smokes on the porch.
Nobody asked me to live as lonely as I have.
At least, he sleeps across the ocean
At least I can think of that.

I look in the kitchen for dried fruit
I find blueberries instead, cold in my mouth
I accept this little by little.

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