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Ghost Walk

Ghost Walk


The past haunts it,

Doesn’t it

It walks with us at night

Well past the witching hour

Sometimes I am awake

On my side

Fearing that my heart might sometime explode

Figuratively but

A crisis with literally arrhythmic parts

It can be a problem

How do I stay awake

(too easily)

And how might I fall asleep again

(that’s hard)


There is an episode of The Dick Van Dyke Show

When, for fear of something, Laura doesn’t want to

Sleep, and so she flips up

All the switches in her house

Plays music and the television

And gets the neighbor to stay up

With her

And there are other alterations


And, you know, I’m sure

There is some resolution

(it’s a half-hour show),

Though I have no idea what that was


But the black-and-white imaging is invoked

When I can’t sleep or think about

The lack of sleep

In the middle of a night and wish for rest


C L Couch



CC0 Public Domain





On a Sunday night,

we walked some streets in Cambridge.

It was fall.  The streets were wet; the

air was chilled.

We actually found a small place

that served chowder.  It was cheap,

and it was good.  And I

imagined a hundred places like it in

the town.  I think I

was right.

That was my first and so far last trip there,

though she came once to me.  But

at the time, we were set at odds against

each other; there was no way

we could get it right.


C L Couch



cambridge mass

Bicycles in the Rain

Mark Hornbuckle


Morning Dark

Morning Dark


morning dark

it’s longer now

and night arrives


longer time for

black sky to have

its way


and in equinox-

thinking, this is



for we should not

fear the dark,

since there is

dreaming there


C L Couch

The Banshee Cries

The Banshee Cries


I split the night, I know

I want to

Further chaos into silent

Human sleep


I have neither quiet

Nor rest

Why should you?


And when my piercing

Work is done

And I’ve coursed through

Your family


I’ll come for you

You won’t see though

You will hear

And maybe at last



Too late to fix your



That’s done:


And you will come with me

To a place

Where hellish noise is

All you know



Betraying man

Who spoke

Curses in love

Fall into Night

Fall into Night


Having slept late,


To my condition


It’s too soon

Now, the three-o’clock

Time when

The day turns

As it must

Toward autumnal



And we notice,

If subcutaneous,

The knowing

Sense of



Inside autumn leaves

We face



To go dry-wilting

Into brown days

Or to


Flame like novae


In glory of

Expiring red,

Yellow tears or


Last bright orange



Dwindling into

Joyful or stressed


Of our

Distinctive seasons



*reader’s choice




Italian night


In Umbrio, in Amatrice

At six-point-two—and now

Rest is something



It is what remains

After all has

Fallen and a

Victim people

Try to rise


Nature has

Split the nation


We must go there

To reach into

Rocks and

Open earth


To remove

Into airy day

Those who must

Exhale still

In order to

Remove or rebuild


Notte bianca o in bianco,

In sleepless night

Psalm 44, a sleep-song

Psalm 44

a sleep-song


I nap and still am tired

Good, maybe I’ll sleep

Through the night

Napping was necessary

I was too sore and too


I could have stayed awake,

I guess,

Except I couldn’t


Will you still love me when

I’m gone away?

I mean, eventually I’ll

Be closer to you than

I was ever before,

Than I am now:


I like you and respect you

I seek to be near you

Is this ever enough to

Bring a dream of you

Or, dreamless, a

Long time of sleep

Because I’m loved


Throughout this night

That you have made?


I can hope so

Not because I’m smart

But because I’m yours

Young Frankenstein

Young Frankenstein


This phrase came to mind

Out of the season’s time:

When the veil fails, speaking

Of Hallowe’en


This is what those of ancient

Lore believed—that gossamer-

Iron webs and steel-misty


Vapors held the other side

On a spellbound, ritualed



Except for


This one time each year


I don’t know what this means;

The child in me didn’t



I dressed colorfully, unusually


Looked through eyeholes

Of masks sweated ’round

The fabric on my face


I was young and relatively



To run my neighborhood


Receiving chocolate reward

For feeling the thrill of cool

Air as more night rushed

Over my skin,


Through folds in costumes,


The faster that I moved

Work in Process

Work in Progress Process


Blank page awaits

No, it doesn’t wait on me—it’s a

Blank page

It doesn’t do anything


But I do

When inspired

Wait—must I wait for that?


It’s a process, you know

Discovery and meaning

I might not have just now


I might have them later

When in composing

Something happens


It’s here—hang on, it’s


On the way, I’m sure


And maybe with regret

I’m late waiting for Godot

The sun sets on my day


But wait—the

Breath of day is ending

Yet exhale and breathing-in of

Night is more inspiring!



(Waiting for Godot, a play by Samuel Beckett)

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