A Favourite Haunting

Date Written: May 28, 2024

Last night I found myself in the dim lights of Gallow’s Green without a soul in sight. For a magical moment I felt terribly, wonderfully alone. I was truly unseen, a wandering ghost roaming a hollow town after/before the residents and visitors dis/appeared.

As I drifted I spyed the tailor through his shop window. I followed him for a time; watched him brush off work surfaces and polish a mirror; enjoyed being invisible but no longer alone.

The empty spaces sang to me and I listened, leaving behind the tailor without a witness to his chores.

I wandered to the cardboard bar, expecting it to be as desolate as the street. Instead, I found the bartender tidying up. I sat against the pool table, enjoying the calm while waiting for the night to begin in earnest. And then something strange happened.

As the bartender cleaned, he glanced at me periodically — sometimes almost suspicious, sometimes almost puzzled, sometimes almost a frown. I wondered if I should move on. I wondered if I was breaking some unspoken contract by being a lone ghost lingering in the wrong place.

He poured himself a drink, still looking towards me now and then with that curious expression. As he made eye contact for the final time, his face broke out into a sly grin. He raised the glass, toasted in my direction, then downed it all.

And I became invisible again.