My sister thinks she is a ghost:
at work, in her car, at home
fixing herself a slice of toast for breakfast
or blow drying her hair
in her bathroom mirror, pausing from time to time
to recite in her mind
the voice we have lost to the vacancy
our sister has become―
thoughts utterly useless to the living
or the dead, she can’t decide
precisely which, as she has
an ambivalence about her,
lost in the ignorability of her grief,
mourning, sometimes, like I do
(a sparsely noticed breeze on a humid summer day),
and when I see her eating barbeque
in my back yard, or lip synching to the radio
as she pulls away, I am often far too careless,
letting myself believe that I am not dreaming.
I must apologize
for having taken her
from this world,
having stolen her
Caleb Curtiss is the author of A Taxonomy of the Space Between Us. His writing has appeared in journals such as The Literary Review, New England Review, Passages North, Green Mountains Review, Gigantic Sequins, and DIAGRAM. He lives in Champaign, Illinois and edits poetry for Hobart.
“Ghost” was originally featured on THRUSH Poetry Journal in January, 2013.
His poem “Swans as a Scourge” appears in The Rogue Idea (TLR Winter 2013).