Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Sweeping ghosts

I woke up facing the wall, just before dawn, to a sound in the room. It was a sort of swishing or scuffling, as though someone was shuffling his feet, slowly, on the dark hard wood floors of my bedroom. The sound continued steadily, a clawed, gnarled, drooling ghost moving slowly toward the bed, perhaps dragging his entrails, like Phii Krasue in Thailand. I remembered that you're supposed to turn around and confront ghosts here, to ask them what they want, so after a few minutes of teeth chattering, I did. There was only the empty, brightening room.

Someone outside had been sweeping, of course. I had known this, in the same way I know I don't believe in ghosts. In North America. But over here, I'm not so sure.

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