Four Ghost Poems

Reverend Ralph Hardy Photographs The Tulip Staircase Ghost, 1966

experts from Kodak say 
there is no evidence 

in the negative, nothing to prove 
nonexistence of her clutched hands,

deny her head’s sharp tilt.
if she exists, why not also

the figure in crinoline 
who walked through walls?

why not the pale woman
and her bucket of blood?

what expert will verify
my unbelief?

Tony O’Rahilly Sees Jane Churn As Wem Town Hall Burns, 1995

how long will you stay
at the scene of your mistake?

candle catching the roof.
church bells melted in their steeples.

how do you calculate
the visibility of guilt?

a year to rebuild. 
a price for what’s gone.

where can you go when the fire
chooses someone else?

only one man died.
he was utterly consumed.

Unknown Ghost At Tewin Bury Farm, Neil Sandbach, 2008

I have no time
for the specters of men,

against all claims imagine
a girl-ghost as I want 

all ghosts to be,
so I can be them –

a glow & lurk
in the corner

of a test shot,
a small still shape

you can see right through
to the sky.

Adam Ellis Posts Pictures Of Dear David, 2017

the light organizes itself
around what’s not there

in each new frame
the figure creeping closer

how near to the lens
for a lack of belief

the distance between
an eye and its object

the idea of pain
not the pain itself

enough photographs of absence
reveal a perfect silhouette

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