Cathleen Allyn Conway

Filling the Ghost Position

I make him who I wanted him to be.
I build him from memory and from other people:
a pick-and-mix of George Clooney’s
hair and Kenneth Branagh’s chin.

I sometimes shop locally if the produce
is available: I once bought a used copy
of D. H. Lawrence’s The Lover because
of the model’s profile on the cover.

With this harvest I mold him,
chew papier-mâché from his letters,
scripts; pocket-mulch magazines,
give him back his language.

I make him perfect. I put a slip of paper
with my name on it into his mouth,
the holy word.

*Cathleen Allyn Conway is originally from Chicago but lives in London. A journalist and research student on Sylvia Plath at the University of Greenwich, her work has previously appeared in Magma, South Bank Poetry, The Beat, 3:AM Magazine, Cliterature and Full of Crow. Her pamphlet Static Cling is forthcoming in 2012 from Chicago’s Dancing Girl Press.

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