Daguerreotype is the day,
ancient as I drive.
Beside me she is a ghost,
and I can’t speak to the veil-
the closed idiom of her soul.
I am the ghost
and have simply lost the language
to this often-paved way.
They got into the car just the same, even though this was a frivolous trip. Even though she knew his silences sometimes lasted the whole way. Today, though, was a study in differentness. It was his averted eyes, his apparent focus on an imagined point just a few feet away or in the upside-down.
She moves to make small talk but it catches in her throat, knowing that it usually elicits impatience and forced responses, and fearing what it might bring today.
“Why did I make him go? What is wrong?”, she thinks. “I can’t stay quiet. I’m just not that person. No. Not alone, with only my own thoughts.”
They cruise, and he disinfects his hands at alternate stop signs. She pats his knee, leaves her hand there. A hundred, a thousand times this road has known them and been peppered with their tire treads.
“Nick, let’s go home, okay?”…in a voice more coquettish than pleading.
But he drives on, comes to the traffic lights which flash alarmingly as if cautioning against any further advance.
“What’s the way, Beth?”
“Nick, what’s wrong? You know the way.”
“Beth, I can’t. I’m sorry. You need to show me.”
And she cries.
Lee Dunn has been writing since the age of 18, but found that work got in the way for the ensuing 48 years. In his home town of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, he reveled in his independence at an early age, and spent as much time as he could exploring the city’s Arts scene. He was introduced to poetry and prose by the works of two literary giants, namely J.R.R. Tolkien and J.W. Lennon and thence fell in love with the written word. His work includes poetry, short fiction, and personal essays, and ranges in theme from the surreal to the horrific, nostalgic, and themes on the human condition. He has been published on Spillwords.com, The Dark Poets Club, Journal of Undiscovered Poets, Crepe & Penn Literary magazine, and the Shelburne Free Press.