Green Hills Literary Lantern

Conjuring the Ghost




All your kindness and the box

it comes in

leftover from the pie sale

your cherries your extra

party hats the tinsel and tintype

monograms becoming less ego-

tistical.  Open the altar boards

you used to shore up scraps,

flurry, prismatic foam

overlaps, reveals all the

worn wishes you kept polishing

even when I wasn't there.  Decades.

You would have chalked my face

cerulean, the purple bedroom

slippers you hoped I'd wear

and happiness a bracelet,

ribbons, silken summaries

of days spent in Monet-garden

shades, you wanted layers

of Divine between my frostings.


I accept your gift, your love

even if it leaves out half of life.



Grace Marie Grafton's poetry received first prize in the annual Bellingham Review contest, was a finalist for Nimrod's Pablo Neruda Prize, and was twice nominated for a Pushcart Prize.  Her chapbook, ZERO, won the Poetic Matrix Press contest.  Her book, Visiting Sisters was published by Coracle Books.  She has taught for many years in the CA Poets In The Schools program.  Poems recently appear in The Modern Poetry Review, Ur*vox, good foot, and Tar Wolf Review.