The Work of Ghosts

The road is bare, except for a few slowly passing cars. It’s high morning when the stale coffee in my hand is warmed by the sun. Down the street, the horses whinny against the weight of their harnesses at the Goodwork Farm. The book I’m reading tells of ghosts and specters.  

Shiny black jinn squawk and fight in the tall pine trees, and a pale dove falls from the sweet citrusy bow. It flaps its wings, and finds the current, settling on the closed lid of a charcoal smoker. I hold my breath as it dances atop the metal lid, heated by the smoldering flames. It flies away, the wind tossing it to the telephone wires. There, it balances on the taught edge of wind-blown electrical wires, cooing for a love that does not hear it above the music of the sweet summer day.

The steady hum of the carpenter bees working away on the old shed bring rhythm to the far end of the natural space, where I settle back into the work of ghosts. 


Categories: Poetry

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Tiffani Burnett-Velez

Tiffani has been a freelance writer since 1996. Her short fiction and poetry have appeared in Toe Good Poetry, Nicean Magazine, and St. Anthony Messenger. Her nonfiction essays and narrative journalism have been published in Pennsylvania Magazine, Yahoo! News, Country Discoveries, The Times-News, and many other magazines and newspapers across the US. She is the author of three novels, Budapest (featured at the NY Book Festival), A Berlin Story (a #1 Kindle Free Book), and All This Time (featured in The Big Thrill magazine). She holds a BA in Cognitive Science and has studied English and American Literature at Harvard and the University of Pennsylvania. She is currently completing her MFA in Writing at Lindenwood University.

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