Tag Archives: Our Ghosts On The Causeway

‘Our Ghosts On The Causeway’ by Robert L. Franklin

To explore this realm is to step through a tunnel

defying space-time, to deviate from the unknown

into an era rich in familiarity

and framed in nostalgia.

It’s easy to plant battered sneakers on

the haggard cement, but difficult to tread

from the sentimental causeway down to the

knives of summertime protruding

from their earthen sheaths.

This place is a graveyard haunted by people

and events long-since gone,

whose afterimages continue to exist

among the overgrowth and the barren gulch

that once served as a hindrance.

It was in this place that boys began their journey

to manhood, transitioned from mischievous to criminal,

entered as virgins and exited baptized.

Their footprints still

give them away in the soft sands.

Their art still colors the concrete

jettisoning from the damp underpass.

Their stained mattresses still rest

dilapidated among the symphony of insects.

Once upon a time,

I helped write the history of this place.

While warm rain fell from the sky,

I ran through the weeds with her

in the jovial preciousness

and pleasurable innocence

that exists only in youth,

before retreating underneath the causeway

and feeling her lips on mine for the first time.

Within the bitter winter,

he and I produced colorful aerosols

and imprinted our imaginations

on the mutilated cement

jetting from the waterlogged soil that anchored it.

They experimented with delinquency

in the early evening hours

while we experimented with honor using our fists.

But now I’m here,

a slow repetition of ethereal notes

sequestering me from the ambient bustle

of the surrounding world,

watching these ghosts play under the causeway

like they were antiquated home movies.

I see us as clearly as I did before,

engaging each other and our mercurial environment

with adolescent recklessness and moxie.

For as long as the causeway stands

and artifacts are left behind,

our ghosts will still

haunt the weeds, the swamp, and the starved ravine

forever attuned to burgeoning juvenescence.

Copyright 2016 by Robert L. Franklin. All rights belong to the author and material may not be copied without the author’s express permission.