Ghost Worker

Ghost Worker


The morning finds me dreamy

I can’t get enough of

The night off before

It started a clear day

Then at work my thoughts became clouded like a bucket of soap and water

My heavy arms lift my limp hands to drag the sponge across the filthy walls I want to break down

Thinking over the choice of which gray string of the mop I should be?

Dragged across the linoleum after hours of hot water and hotter oil spilling

On arms and knife wounds bleeding red onto white sugar packets

Mom is fuzzed out of her mind at the kitchen table in the early winter of loving her children

What’s with the avoidance?

It’s snowing

The Doctor is drowning himself in necessary chores

Maintaining an office as disorganized as a burnt pan piled in a full sink

There’s no nurse or secretary and so

The rest of us clean our clocks to make sure we’re reading his continuous lateness right

He fiddles with loading, then unloading the dishes

Unloading, then loading the washer machine

Folding, then unfolding the clothes

A good or bad influence

It all depends on the mood

A bad loop

Another workday is done and another is to come

The snow is collecting

Don’t go and get buried

In your work

Let that good time out more

And keep that other part bottled for a bit

Let it age like the wines we love

Shut up inside

Like Jack

In the box

Nodding, smiling, praying for the music to open the door

Expose wounded tissues and work ignored muscles

Let the blood in those veins be like road maps

Out of the dusty darkness of poorly lit rooms

And onto the interesting side roads

With cars asleep and everyone is walking about and let that be

Like a sting in the eye that we can’t flush out

Lighting up a new carousel of actions, places, and relationships that

Make a life ###


Mitchell Flanagan


Mitchell Flanagan is an artist, writer, and musician. His poems have appeared in the magazine The Chronogram in August of 2010 and December 2011. His work has previously appeared in Ariel Chart in April of 2020 and April of 2021. He's working on a collection of short stories, novels, and poetry books. He's hoping to put these works out soon. He also writes songs, plays bass, and sings with his band Cold Heaven who recently released new music and a new album called Unraveled. He lives and sleeps occasionally in Newburgh, New York. 


  1. i'm down with the paranormal. bring on the ghost lit.

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