Size / / /

Who was it that said human

beings never conceptualized

the notion of ghosts

until the first house with two

rooms was built? Freud?

Jung? I no longer remember.

And I'm skeptical of the theory

in general since all manner

of quasi-spooky threats

must have stalked, if not

the twilit bosks of Eden, with

its glib serpents and winged

shadows, then the savannahs

and caves of early Homo diasporus

especially at night. All it took

was imagination to flesh them

out and then collectively,

at the root-meme level, store them

for easy retrieval in some sulcus

of the tribal id.

Hormonally, I bet, it's this

constellation of neurons

that fires up in the crepuscular

murk of the back brain

whenever a strange noise

or glimmer manifests,

transmogrifying vague or inchoate

menace into a universal

Who goes there?

But no one goes there: it's just

neural chatter, the ghost meme,

ancestral shadows or footfalls

in the hallways of the brain.

Ergo, my rejection of the second

room theory—not that I've any plans

soon of giving up my single-room

apartment.




Robert Borski works for a consortium of elves repairing shoes in Stevens Point, Wisconsin. You can read more of his work in our archives.
Current Issue
30 Jun 2020

Finding your community can feel like finding home and family
Something knocks on the door. Esther, dreaming, would like to ignore it. Instead, she blinks awake and grabs her shotgun, because dead things typically call for bullets, not spell work, and whatever wants inside her home is certainly dead.
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Issue 22 Jun 2020
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Issue 15 Jun 2020
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Issue 8 Jun 2020
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Issue 2 Jun 2020
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Issue 1 Jun 2020
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Issue 4 May 2020
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Issue 20 Apr 2020
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