Brett Elizabeth Jenkins lives, writes, and teaches in St. Paul. Look for her work in Beloit Poetry Journal, Potomac Review, PANK, and elsewhere.
There is a ghost in the machine of my body. The haunting
happens like this: I loll on the bed, open-mouthed,
acting dead. My husband asks, Are you dead
again? My gallbladder this time. If removed,
the ghost would return to inhabit my pancreas.
My lung swells with the ghost. It haunts and goes
deeper when I breathe. The ghost likes the smell
of trumpets and clapping. Today I am dead
on the kitchen floor. Are you dead?
Sometimes I say Yes, of course I’m dead. Other times he steps
around my dead body, opening cupboards, putting away the plates.