Ghosts – silence


An investigation for jesters

and saints,

this sadness of a man,

this separated ghost,

this disconnected stare

in brittle glass,

unrecognized reflection

of nothing known

in this frozen liquid sand,

pinned to a drawing board,


in clouds of calendars

and an ambiance

of echoing silence.


Ghost of a ghost

exiled from connection

to all familiar senses,

wandering lost

in a papier-mache world

filled with mute puppets

and the creeping feet of madness

drifting on autumn leaves,

the dumb changing of seasons

and the cold winds to come.


There was a voice once

filling days and nights,

sweet ectoplasms of love

buried now in the heavy quiet

of collapsing bridges

and the broken entities of light.


There was a precious presence

partnering in mirrors,

a twinning wholeness

held gently in his hands,

now crumbling into dust

and blown on September winds

across a face

that is a stranger to itself.


There was music and whispers

tongued and lipped

across vibrating cells,

songs of angels and dreamers

gagged now and gone,

leaving a face alone

to face itself,

a double haunting.

ex silentio.



self-portrait drawing and poem by clinock.


20 thoughts on “Ghosts – silence

  1. It’s very sad but the creative energy you pour into the words and image redeem if from lostness. It’s such an authentic expression from self I feel I don’t want to comment except to say I hear you. The good thing about mirrors is that we can look and look again and find new images day to day. Thank you John.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. A fine membrane between ecstasy and pain
    Who listens to the anima
    as she sings her enchanting song?
    A timpani of aural cadence
    along the underworld canal

    Who listens to the anima
    continually sows the fertile seeds of desire
    as they look through
    the many mirrors
    in her kaleidoscopic turning


    1. Anima, siren, muse
      enchanting, elusive
      as the song and dance
      in smoke
      and mirrors

      to listen is to be lost
      and found
      and lost again,
      to not listen is to become
      dry husk


  3. John your self portrait I can “feel” immediately…….deep and intense! It communicates without words. Now your poem……is another matter. I keep getting pulled up to digest your descriptive words.i.e. “frozen liquid sand” or “heavy quiet” etc. etc. Each requires, no demands engagement. Thought does not solve the imagery. It requires contemplation. To me these are like stop lights along your journey. They provide a tempory pause to refresh and attempt to understand where you are on this amazing journey. We are continually struggling to understand and glimpes the depth of your soul. If I am way of the mark please forgive me…..


    1. My dear friend, you are never, ever “way off the mark”, quite the contrary. You always look and see and read with the deepest caring and perception. That you choose to give your time and energy sharing my journey means so very much and I always hope that what I share is meaningful in some way to others. Through replies like yours to posts such as this I come to see myself and my expressions with more clarity and know I am so much more than a ghost, because I am heard and understood. Thank you Robert…


  4. I’ve been reading your “Ghost” series this morning, starting from earlier in September. They are strong and so compelling, but then this one! Oh my, John. I’m so powerfully moved. You’ve used such carefully (and perfectly) constructed words and phrases to deliver such a hard-hitting emotional punch–both beautiful and mournful. Your face in the mirror looks both lost and at the same time deeply aware–the separated ghost. I agree with Carl!


    1. Thank you for spending time with my ghosts Debra, not an easy read I know. I sometimes hesitate to share such personal journeys but then understand this sharing is mostly why I blog. I trust my readers and hope in someway what I post is of value to others. I know it helps me to put it all out there and receive such caring responses as yours…


  5. Hi John, your ghosts have accompanied me in bad hours when I could not read; your poems now give me time to think as I ponder about every line and see meanings emerge. Sad and cruel as life sometimes seems, all this is strangely beautiful. x


    1. Yes, so strangely beautiful…If my ghosts were able to be with you in the bad hours, without the hauntings, they have found a true purpose. It is so very life confirming to see you on-line again Ina. I know it is a hiatus only. We breathe in and we breathe out and between breaths is silence. My heart and spirit are with you and your loved ones…


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