Leaving the Town

(Note: this is part of a much larger piece I am writing about leaving a small Maine town).


I said goodbye to all the ghosts who lived and died there

Connie and Bill

The dead husbands

The mother and son who gassed themselves in the garage

The young mother shot by a handyman 30 years ago

The father of nine who had died in the old white house

The tales of sea captains who roamed all the houses’ halls,

The woman’s shade who stood outside the Estate cottage

The chair that shook in the haunted library

The pale couple who once lived in the carriage house

now overrun by mice, gaping hole in the roof

The elaborate gateposts of forgotten mansions

that burnt years ago

The matted fur of the shivering terrier

tied up outside the hoarder’s house.


I began to forget what it was to be cut off from the world.

Alone in the Estate’s dark wood,

riddled with foundation holes as it was

I had no direction

“You could walk all the way to Richmond through these woods,” they said.

I walked there alone, and onward.


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