The Ghost of the Grey

Photo by Jan Canty on Unsplash

Indefinite, she rises
A sombre shade of grey
Melancholy by her movements
Spectral by the day
Licking at the sunset
She pokes the dawn away
This ghost is acting strangely
This ghost of Anna-May

A charcoal wash, her paintbrush
In gloaming, she will pray
To those willing to hear her
To listen to what she’ll say
For screaming’s not so fearsome
In a misting winter bay
Where she leads the dead from water
As they set their feet on clay

To fear her, is to see her
Unadulterated fay
She who walked amongst us
Now drifts here to betray
The ones who marked her passing
The ones who sparked foul play
But most of all once lovers
This man who writes to pay

Thank you for reading

Richard M. Ankers
Author of the brand new steampunk extravaganza Britannia Unleashed.

The Me I Once Was

Photo by Marek Piwnicki on Unsplash
Photo by Marek Piwnicki on Unsplash

Transparent times made for invisible people, and I was more invisible than most. Where others had lips, cheeks, chins and expressions, I had an outline that wavered as a golden mist. Where others had eyes, I had hollows, and it was in these where all my sorrows pooled.
To weep without salinity, tracks, or wetness, is to not weep at all, yet I did. The flow was constant and the craving for more irreversible. Perhaps this was what prompted my transition from nothing, to something, to more.
A ghost is the very personification of gone, so to make gone return, took effort. I strained every atom, recalled every memory, coalesced from that dream termed death. But return, I did.
My hands and feet came first, like an erased pencil sketch redrawn from somebody else’s perspective: I was not the me I once was. A fully formed torso and face came next; I touched them and wept some more. It was this that gave my true self away, the agony of my situation. There was still no water and no tear. When I touched at my eyes, they too were missing, my newly formed fingers passing straight into my hollow skull.
It was several days and close to midnight before I took the decision to stop trying. I hovered at the end of my once wife’s bed. She noticed.
The light flicked on before I could move, and there I was facing the mirror, or rather, most of me was. I fled.
I still haunted our old house long after Karen passed. My wife never came back. I tormented those others, then those after them, and then many more. I waited for the one who might have my eyes, but, of course, I never saw them.

Thank you for reading

Richard M. Ankers
Author of the brand new steampunk extravaganza Britannia Unleashed.

Sitting Without Reason

She sits at the bus stop day after day. I stand at my window, imagining her name. Rain or shine, snow or wind, it makes no difference to the girl in the little lemon dress. She waits there regardless. I watch her the same.
There are buses every fifteen minutes that lead to and from the city, but which city, I no longer recall? I’m as obsessed with her as she is with time. She’s crying today.
I pour out a coffee on this evening to chill souls. Seeing her waiting for a man who’ll never arrive has warped my mind. Today, I shall make a difference. Today, I shall do the right thing.
The door clicks shut in my wake; my eyes are already upon her. She shields her own from the steadily falling snow, invisible against her porcelain features. The coffee steams from the cup.
The distance takes an age to cover, not because of the traffic, as there is none, but from my stuttering footsteps.
“Hello,” I say when almost upon her. “I’ve brought something to warm your soul.”
The cup is offered and dropped, slipping from her fingers like a dream. This saddens me and I leave.
The next day comes, and she is gone. All I can think is, was she ever there? And, was I?

An End

Thank you for reading


Image courtesy Darren Viollet