Monday, September 29, 2014
Working the Ghost Town
They built it from below, we watched.
They bricked the entrance red, a throat groaning
Below their hill that swelled among the trunks.
Their offices grew there, fading, a ghost town
From the very beginning. Someone got a deal
On someone else’s old town, used buildings.
An old Texas outpost, ahistorical, unremembered.
They bought the roofs and walls and stilts,
Painted the doors and boards and screens
Hung the signs warning of armed fairies
Floating up from the darkness.
We answered the ads, some of us ate
Cookies they’d left out, bread filled with fruit
None of us had tasted before. Baked afternoons lay
Stale across the couches stuffed with horse hair.
Bitter coffee hints kept us on edge, drowsing
Beneath pictures that creep above our hair,
Colors flickering. Have another bite, drink
This sweet darkness we’ve brewed just
Behind the door.
They say horses are turned loose at night,
Riderless hooves burning tracks around town.
We don't see them, although we sit on their hair
Or shiver as if they whicker beneath our soles.
No one steals our parking spaces; our cars
Slide through the wood, turn by the thick trunk
And fill the spoke. Orange leaves fall; frames rust,
Tires pop. Yellow leaves pile around us.
We’re paid in fairy gold, but we shed it all
When we leave, just before the night falls
Ahead of the horses.
Image courtesy of Magpie Tales.