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John Grey


Last night,

I spent time in my parlor

in the company of dead people.

There was no conversation.

They could neither speak nor hear.

And, with their eye sockets blank,

they had no way to read my lips.

But I was relaxed.

And they seemed the same.

At least, so much more

than the forced-grin beings

of the family photographs.

They asked nothing of me

and I wanted nothing from then.

I sat back

in the comfortable over-stuffed chair,

They relaxed, side by side, on the couch.

Yet, after a time,

I could no longer bear the separation.

So they slipped back inside me

and we watched some TV.


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The image of Quasimodo is by French artist Louis Steinheil, which appeared in  the 1844 edition of Victor Hugo's "Notre-Dame de Paris" published by Perrotin of Paris.


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