William B. Watterson

Rookie - 18 Points (23 August 1943)

Ghosts - Poem by William B. Watterson

Dim vignettes
like pale images
in a sepia photograph
float across
the shadowy surface
of my memory.
They are all there,
my cherished ghosts:
the old quarry,
Midway Lake,
Eddie and Bob,
Sis and Tip,
and the rest.
Out of the mist
they call to me
across the gulf
in thin, sad voices,
keening a song
of a time
that was
but never was,
of a place
we passed
but never passed.

in this cold
frustrating frame,
I long
to scale gray granite walls,
to search for garnets
among crumbling stones,
to walk the grassy banks
once more
between waving rushes
and watch wallowing carp
in the shallows,
to trace the path
behind Perry's garage
and shiver
in the sharp
December night
as fireworks flash
above moonlit pines.

Straining now
to climb a hill,
to see a sunset,
to catch a falling leaf,
I find that I
am ever haunted
by the far, faint cries
of my ghosts.

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Poem Submitted: Sunday, December 13, 2009

Poem Edited: Sunday, December 8, 2013

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