Thursday, August 13

Memories as Ghosts

I live in my head often, where I am unanchored, aimless, purposeless, floating in the chaos of things that have been, might have been, and might come to pass. This jetsam reminds me of the Bermuda Triangle, where the ships and planes of my experience have crashed and sunk to the bottom of my subconscious sea.

If I pause, I can hear them. If I stare at the ceiling, I can see their faces mouthing words in the asbestos ocean. I've had a conversation with Abraham Lincoln as he strained in the plaster. Hundreds of faces coalesce into a caviar monstrosity, each wailing a soundless cry.

Sometimes they take on a reality again, with an email washed up on my shore, or a passing gossip from a friend of a friend of a friend. At this point, these ghosts are as real as Mars, which I have never been to, and yet pulls on me lightly from afar.

Sometimes these poltergeists can paralyze me, shackle me to the bed I have made, and again I am thrashing in a hurricane of my humiliations and embarrassments, the wreckage of my regret battering my psychic self. Nothing pierces my skin, and I am in such pain, these billions of ghosts, everyone who has ever lived and died, everyone who will ever think and feel becomes an infinite wave and I am so small, so insignificant, and I am lost, annihilated under their tragedies and triumphs.

Then a real life ghost appears, shrouded in a blanket. He smiles and growls, "I'm a monster!"

I say, "I love you kid," and I am exorcised.

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