Social distancing from ghosts

Disinfectant won’t work.
Hydroxychloroquine is hopeless.
Incantations are of dubious value, and
masks are naive, where spirits are concerned.
Closing your eyes just lets them swarm closer.
If ghosts want you, they will have you,
just as the sea picks sailors, pulling them down,
or smashing heads like piñatas on rocks.
Ghosts sidle too close all the time.
They have no regard for the sacred 1.5 metres,
urged by measured authorities.
Your arm-hairs will rise to shivered attention,
as if they were tiny watchdogs, smelling intruders.
Ghosts’ sighs are unrestrained, though full of angst,
rather than viruses. They will kill you,
but the mechanism is fear, fear moist as urine.
They enter into you; make you their society.
They distance you from yourself,
plant a crooked crown of otherness
on your distracted head.
They make you what they will.

PS Cottier


PS Cottier is a woman of letters, mostly ‘t’s.

© 2021