Ghosts & Goblins

Michael Marberry

Ghosts whisper, waiting to be told

they can leave now. You have listened

all your life, all that you’re able

but never enough. Happiness

was a woman once beside you

who filled the sky with red devils,

wearing a moon-gown, all blue-haired

and breathless. The cemetery —

suddenly alive with zombies,

woodpigs, unicorns — exploded

like a stone. You’ve carried too long

those oft-rejected books, the past

a glass armor always failing.

You’re (nearly) naked with your grief.

How terrible to learn you’re loved

less than you reckoned, rarely missed

among friends. We live once only

to return and relearn each scar

from the start, the ghosts remind you.

The whispers sheathing like a knife.


about the author