• Vol. 10
  • Chapter 09

Struldbrug in a Fuchsia Coat

Rush hour in Luggnagg,
a struldbrug with a crimson parasol asks for directions:
“Which way is heaven?”
She has been circling the island for days,
her lost face a smudge of mascara tears.

Above her left eyebrow
time’s long arc is stamped like a wax seal, inimical black.
Bent double with the burden
of fourscore years, she is officially deceased,
cursed to walk these streets for all eternity.

She wears a fuchsia coat
in the vain hope that she will be noticed, but her insides
are dust, a pill-box regimen,
the mind collapsing, cloud-wisped, bereft:
this is the spare theatre of fading ghosts.