Friday, October 27, 2006
"Revenants" by Keith Harvey
These days, thirty years after their passing,
one or the other taps on my door
or scratches the screen with nails bitten to the quick.
The younger one, who cut her wrists,
sometimes appears with a hand full of beignets
then drops her jeans and t-shirt in the foyer
before slipping under damp sheets with a giggle.
The older, married one, who overdosed on sleeping pills,
sneaks up the alley and stares
through the screens until I feel her wild crazy eyes
blink behind the bottled lens of her spectacles.
She places them on the table near the door
before striding blindly with the confidence of frozen age
through the house turning off lights as she sheds her sun dress.
I cannot reject them now, nor could I then.
In their madness they were alive
with an electrical pulse that ran hot
beneath their soft skin
and I could not, nor can I now,
resist the sensual shock
of lightning over dark water at midnight.