Leaving a place you love turns it into a haunted house,
and the morning will never come. You can tell yourself
the house is settling. That there are no footstep on the stairs.
The draft can be fixed with plastic on the windows
and you will do it tomorrow. You can tell yourself it’s not
an open door that you will walk through willingly, even though
you know it is. You opened the door yourself. You
have seen the ghost, womanshaped shadow, the lace veil
of absence, turning her face, like the moon, toward you.
She has walked in step with you from the other side
of windows. Every friend now calls you by her name,
a mirror, a long embrace. A tightening across the eyes,
hands full of the the last time they expect to touch
your skin, looking up and around you to trace
the space you will leave behind when you go. This is
the ghost haunting your home, and you know
you cannot appease the thing. It is going to pace the hall
until you leave, and then fade slow as a scar, before
everyone’s eyes. The home will turn to a house, haunted.
Soon, when you dream of her and wake crying, someone
new will come running, someone who has never wrapped
your face around goodbye. They will come too late,
and your hands will be empty, fistfuls of ringing air, saying,
it was right here, I saw it. I swear to God she was right here.