IT’S GHOST TIME AGAIN
by Francine Witte
It’s ghost time again,
and my mother doesn’t know. But I know, and it shivers me like stone February to see this ghost that’s not at all like my father, who is lonely and clean-shaven. This ghost doesn’t give a hoot that my mother is asleep, but I’m not so sure she’d stop it, because if sleeping in separate rooms is any indication, my father hasn’t touched her in years. And that started around the time he lost his job and moved himself a sock at a time, a shirt at a time until he was gone. And now they are both sexless, but at least my mother has sleep. Not like it used to be with her walking the floorboards, tango or foxtrot or whatever the hell. I live in the room under hers and when she stopped moving I went up there, and that’s when I saw the ghost, his white ghosty sex hand trailing up her nightgown and she’d moan and shift, and she really seemed to like it, big smile crossing her sleepy face, and that’s when I came to realize that a ghost can be a better lover than a real-life lover, and it just might change how I think about dating and marriage, which, to tell you the truth is kind of a dead thing anyway.
Francine Witte’s latest publications are a full-length poetry collection, Theory of Flesh from Kelsay Books and the Blue Light Press First Prize Winner, Dressed All Wrong for This. Her flash fiction has appeared in numerous journals, anthologized in the most recent New Micro (W.W. Norton) and her novella-in-flash, The Way of the Wind, has just been published by Ad Hoc Fiction. She lives in New York City.
Author photo credit: Mark Strodl