How Ghosts are Made

Death is supposed to be the last, great refuge for troubled minds. From ashes to ashes, dust to dust, and into the big black. It’s the blessed relief of personal extinction. The hidden regret and all-too-public shamings that cluttered up your fretful, spluttering half-life finally get snuffed forever.

But can those things ever truly be extinguished? Perhaps not really. Perhaps they simply lay with your rotting corpse, waiting to be unearthed all over again. It’s probably some gravedigger that does it—a sick sadist with a muckrake and an agenda who drecks through your spell of days like it’s a top priority WikiLeaks scandal that the entire universe must know every last gasp about.

So why does it feel like the universe already knows? Why the nagging guilt no matter how bone free your closet might actually be?

Your social media accounts don’t magically self-destruct within five seconds of you stiffing it. Those secret dick and clunge pics don’t clean up after themselves either. And those passive aggressive status updates you so artfully tailored for maximum jabbiness aren’t fooling anyone—least of all that one person who must never be named for fear of mutual friends finding out you’re just a bitter, judgemental prick.

The internet is the new universe, and it’s watching your every move like the silent, voyeuristic, omnipresent predator it is. Instead of looking out, we look in, and so does it—right inside to our collective core. And while it may have begun life as just another straw god we’ve fashioned for ourselves, this is one straw god that’s grown legitimately and malevolently all-powerful. The internet has the genuine capacity to not only destroy lives but also to completely unmake them.

That isn’t a boon for the cause of social justice by the way—not when you have pernicious shame-baiting disguised as entreaties for ‘correct’ ethics and behaviour. It makes me so mad. I hate the Twitter bullies, the Facebook assassins, and the faux progressives who are just as petty as the next person. An individual’s life can be cherry picked then ripped apart in the kangaroo court of misinformed opinion. Rest in peace? More like rest in pieces! And meanwhile, the self-righteous wolverines of ‘integrity’ continue to parade their brand of alleged egalitarianism within their echo chambers of uncritical acclaim.

“They never knew me.” That’s the nub of it. It’s the one thing we can all truthfully say. No one ever bothered to try to understand. They took a little snippet here, they took a little snippet there, and then decided these snippets were all there was to know about us. Never mind the rich, inner animateness we had going on. Egoists never care for bosh like that. They have no regard for any of the hopes, fears and innate humanity we may actually possess. All they need do is to poke their noses into our private affairs, sans context, and usher in complete ruin—all to declare another someone a moral failure.

So, yeah, this is why I’m still here. I cannot dissolve in mindless repose while this shit is going on. I cannot lie because they cannot let it lie. And what they say hurts me. It hurts those closest to me. The mutual backslapping sanctimony of those serial dogpilers keeps me tethered to this wretched mortal cliché. Yeah, I’m so fired up about it that I even left my cosy grave to go and buy myself a bible today. Me, a ghost, buying a ‘holy’ book! I shouldn’t even be here. I’ve got better things to do than to exist. I’ve had my time.

The internet is just the universe of our modernity, and god is… well, he/she/it hasn’t fully been discounted yet, as much as the human race might wish otherwise. God is the eternal poltergeist that haunts the darkest corners of our minds, a narcissistic tyrant who won’t let go, who displays a rapey kind of ‘love’ that keeps on taking until all that’s left is the detritus of hollowed out ghosts.

I’m going to burn this bible, god. That’ll show you, you spectral thug! I’ll rewrite your Wikipedia page, exposing who you really are, then lock it down so that the evidence cannot be removed or tampered with, and remains viewable for all time. I’ll shame you yet, though I no longer believe in your existence!

No, really, I don’t.

Now, please, just let me lie.

 

by TONY SINGLE
© All rights reserved 2018

i lay all this while (gulliver’s undoing)

let me tell you what little i know
i am not the man i ought to be
nor half a man if not for you
i’m stranger in a strange land
than i have ever been before

what no one here dares concede
is all we do is use and be used
we’re not the masks that wear all we
to be needy isn’t merely to bleed
carmine prints where we strove to be

time’s run out for it all to still matter
i’m bludgeoned, cowed, rarely right
i’d sooner delight in being more wrong
questions are my faithful companions
answers swan in with blazing cannons

i have no power to enact my privilege
i have no tower to enthrone my will
but i have a flower sat in my hair here
a curious plesh o’er frangible crown

i’m here yet unaccounted for
wrecked in my own inscrutable way
trajectories frill my shuttered mind
perhaps there’re none that really know me
the first in a long line of ignorants

i have no wish to disengage
the shells have forced an unembellishing
they smite me down for the little i am
ricochet out from what could have been
i’m induced to reduce to no margin for error

let me knell what little i know
i am not the man i sought to be
nor half a man if not for you
i’m stranger in a strange land
than i have ever been before

i have no power to enact my privilege
i have no tower to enthrone my will
but i have a flower sat in my hair here
a curious plesh o’er frangible crown

 

by TONY SINGLE
© All rights reserved 2017

All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth

Poor Santa. Year after year he thinks of everyone else but no one thinks of him. He delivers gifts by the sack load to a gazillion billion entitled ingrates, and do they thank him? Hell, no! If someone catches him shimmying down their chimney on Christmas Eve, they punch him in the mouth and have him arrested!

He doesn’t even get given Christmas cards. Not a single one. Only an angry letter from some guy named Tony. No wonder Santa doesn’t feel loved. No wonder he wants to quit being Santa. But it’s okay, Santa, we still love you. There’s always next year.

Merry Christmas, Santa.

 

by TETIANA ALEKSINATONY SINGLE
© All rights reserved 2016

GUEST POST // Peak of Loneliness by Purpleanais

After years
of dedication
a hell of a lot
of stress
a smidgen of luck
a bucketful of pure selfishness
and mighty hard work –
money, success
and power
are now yours to hold
you’ve got what you’ve always wanted
pushed everyone away for
you’ve finally found the fucking match
and set the world on fire
it’s blazing
dazzling
flames
as high as mountains
blue-oranges, reds, yellow-gold
not seen since days of old
Alas, you’re watching that intense glow
completely and utterly alone

 

by PURPLEANAIS
© All rights reserved 2015

GUEST POST // Black Lake by Purple Creature

My heartbeat quickens, the skin on my body tingles,
Like the morning sunrise, my body is alive…
From my toes, upward to my chiseled legs
I feel electricity surge through my body…
When I close my eyes,
I can feel the blood surging through all parts of my body…
I steady my breath…
I slowly ascend into the dark still waters of the black lake.
I am alone, yet I feel all things around me, and it comforts me.
I am one with nature, and she with me…
As I swim to the deepest part, small ripples, become bigger ripples,
I am announcing myself to the majestic black lake.
The water, is cool on my naked body, it relaxes me.
My body is now one with the lake, we belong to each other…
Floating on my back, I feel all my blood pulsating through me…
My cock, my manhood, is erect and hard…
I am one with nature, and she with me.
I close my eyes, as I hear a faint noise approach, getting louder.
Now perched on my Manhood, is the Goliath Birdwing butterfly.
Beautiful and elegant is her body, our eyes are transfixed on each other…
She smiles, opens her mouth, bites off my manhood, and flies away into the darkness.
We have now become one… We are now Symbiotic with each other…
I exhale my last breath, and descend into the depths of the majestic black lake…
I am one with nature and she with me…
Forever more…

 

by PURPLE CREATURE
© All rights reserved 2016