Archive for the 'Xiuyuan Hu + Rebecca Tamás' Category

The Cock Lane Ghost


The Cock Lane Ghost



What they want, this chapped lip January,

is something to believe in—

the border of the world pulled back,

skin peeled off bone to where the blood is.


A petty, thin, accusing ghost,

still it’s enough to send the hopeful running

through the cold streets,

enlightenment dimming like a lowered gas lamp.


Men stand around waiting to be amazed,


one knock for no


two knocks for yes


waiting to be made miraculous,

lifted from the split ground

and put down whole again.


When, after hours of strained listening,

they find the girl with the wood in her hand

tapping the floorboards,

mystery goes back to its hiding place.


Light pushes its way through the mute clouds

and illuminates a room drained of the warm hum of spectres,

where the only thing beyond the walls

is air.




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