Photo by Laura Kranz on Unsplash

I live with many ghosts,

some watch me from the shadows,

some exist out of the corner of my eye,

but the ones that drown me late at night,

are the ones who live in my chest.


They are the ones who rise up,

who etch scars that ache and burn,

that spread in veins,

dripping into the rest of my body,

until I lie wracked with muck

a small, weak, blackened figure

burned when I least expect.


They grow in numbers,

shifting in and out of focus,

Sometimes they are faces I know,

bodies I have touched,

loves I have destroyed.


They are the constant whisper in my ear,

just behind my shoulder,

the eye that grins as I push forward,

when they have been quiet for months.

But it’s a lie.


They graze the healed lines on my body,

Their fine, tangle of ropes

Slicing into the fabric of my skin

Smiling at the audacity,

the naivity,

that after all this time,

I still haven’t learned.


They are for life

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