Marge Piercy

Ghosts

The skin falls like leaves

in slow motion, I know it,

is sifted and shifted

by the wind like a dune.

The skin that knew you

seven years back

has sluffed and grown part

of another, some cow,

an oak tree, a crow.

 

The years wear holes in us,

what looks solid as sheet

metal, one morning the glass

face of the next builidng

peers through. Theories, rhetoric

fade like a Mail Pouch ad

on an old barn, but the structure

stands firm while the winds

howl through the necessary cracks.

 

What lives of the woman who

loved you? The fears that twittered

stripping me bare and bony

have risen in a shrill flock

and settled in younger women.

I worry about money

but rarely about my face,

responsibilities hang at my tits

squealing and fat as baby pigs.

 

Your ghost curls floating in the closed

waters of dream. Your mouth

moves on my throat in the dark,

my hands exactly form your back,

unscalded by the blood of our parting.

I wake trembling in a body you never

touched, while past the curve of the earth

you sleep. Time thickens you.

On the street would I know your face?

 

 

Marge Piercy

 Marge   Piercy

Marge Piercy is the author of seventeen novels including The New York Times Bestseller Gone to Soldiers.


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