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March 10, 2022 / barton smock

( ghostalgia ( entries at 16

I don't know how to tell you that god comes back for everything but the mouth or that sleep was the last breathing machine to break our first. 

loses word.

Buzz rootless in the child's bee.


After all, I did not tell you that my son's body is a cloud, his pain

the duster
of his bones, his loneliness

that of a parent
with children 


In the doll's only dream, the child cuts god underwater

I wasn't ugly 
but you didn't 
see me

Return gives its hair to absence

An elevator is lost 
by an angel


A pup expires with a yip in a ransacked store. You say we are behind the snowy tv screen we made into a blanket for a dying robot. You can have me from the waist up. In Ohio I am not a girl chewing the corner of a baseball card but I am her brother researching the toy exile of lightning storms. Our domestic inquiries include the sex of the first person in hell, the number of animals giving birth in the field that burned emptiness, and if Adam was Eve's great lie. The more I think of time travel, the more it can do.


memory scares itself
or once

you've a way

with squirrels
and pain


A train named after another train 
changes fields. 

Mirrors forget
that god
can't move.


God slips in and out of the bomb before it lands

Snow and rain
meet once
Not yet


A moon-owned payphone

The leaf of my pain

A pharmacy
trying to move
a tornado

Bad lighting, cigarettes, grass

It's not


You are a certain way 
and look 
for love

learns of sleep

Jesus wanting there to be a god


I can't tell if my stories start in the middle or if they're just without a beginning. The last time I heard my grandmother sing, I was at rest in a boy pretending to sleep. Footprint, footstep. The hands love both.


the crawling, the baby, what if it was never me, what if it was my memory of being near the thing that's coming, and my kids can't sleep 

if a paint can
is open 

and you only talk to me when I'm dying 


In the dream that my brother calls his haircut dream, I have a tail I'm not allowed to touch. I tell him no haircut has ever taken this long. I tell him that god wanted more kids. I am trying to make him laugh, or pray. Far mice are eating the noise from your wrist.


I am small asking if I can bring some snow with me into the bathtub & someone starts to say no but because we're outside nothing gets finished & later to my mom someone explains how frostbite has been using our handwriting for suicide notes & pain in its unfound egg is drawing its take on pain 


My neighbor on one side has a pop-gun and my neighbor on the other a candy cigarette. Both are on me to get a pool as if we've seen the last of any mother's blue-headed angel. Like most houses our houses are made of a god listening for the toothpick that sings to a crack from inside a doll. Doll I am not surprised to be with you in the same bathtub where sleep stays to remind death of its failed audition. I don't tell you about my kids. 


Say poor and I'll say my arsonist son didn't sell a single flashlight. Touch is a debt touch owes itself. A warm boat left on the erasable sea.


By the time darkness touches every map, the baby is useless. God a mistake mistaken for a childhood's double life. If there is a horse, there is a horse

thinking only of itself yet also
on the kindness 
of a past 

Sight cooks my eye in a voided spoon.

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