Issue No. 6, Autumn 2013

Ghost Story
Crystal Bacon

Padme, whose name means
Lotus of Wisdom, and who comes
from a long line of Temple dogs
from when Tibet existed
as more than a state of mind,
growls attentively, and low
at the ghosts that flutter
in the predawn light
on our neighbor’s window.

In the landing’s shadows,
her small eyes, veiled
in sheaths of hair,
seek meaning in these shapes
both ominous and luminous
that either threaten or beckon.

Who can say what message
they bring from that other world,
the Dollar Store on Ridge Avenue?

As we emerge into the lamp-lit yard,
even our breath becomes vapor,
spirit entering and exiting
the body, sanctuary of flesh.

Crystal Bacon’s first book of poems, Elegy with a Glass of Whiskey, won the 2003 A. Poulin New Poetry America Prize from BOA Editions and was published in 2004. She is a graduate of the Warren Wilson MFA Program for Writers, and her work has appeared in a variety of publications in the US and abroad. Her poems explore the nature of being, living on the edge between spirit and matter, the finite and the infinite. She is an Assistant Professor of English at the Community College of Philadelphia.