Photo By martin.mutch

You’ve always been a ghost,
to me, rooted to the hall carpet’s cheap
brown fuzz, the whale song
of your intentions littering the background
of my life like yesterday’s socks
when I wish, I wish I could only
hear it hum. Maybe you trained crows
to scour the sides of highways for tossed
coins, love notes blown from messy
cars, with the intention of sharing
these things. Maybe you were the one
who was brave enough to swim
to the stratosphere when the heavy
winds came, but could not teach me
to keep my arms up. You loved
and were loved long before I ever
appeared. I’m grateful for this.
There could be no greater horror
than the dead watching over the lives
they can no longer help.

CL Bledsoe is the assistant editor for The Dead Mule and author of sixteen books, most recently the poetry collection Trashcans in Love and the flash fiction collection Ray’s Sea World. Recent work appears in The Arkansas Review, Contrary, and Barrelhouse. He lives in northern Virginia with his daughter and blogs at

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