Ghost Dog

You can hear a dog barking outside our dorm. No one knows how—there are obviously no dogs in dorms. Yet every so often we hear a dog. “Ghost dog,” Miranda says.

It’s a funny thing, dread. Or maybe it’s mortification, I’m not sure. But it starts in the hollow pit of your stomach, where everything is sad and cold and terrible, and crawls up with long, icy claws. You can feel it climbing, sinking into you, and even after it’s gone away it still rattles in your chest. It jumps backwards and forwards, like a creature trying to break free, to the point of evoking physical pain. It grasps onto your heart and it doesn’t let go.

Summer is dying. It’s as if the first day of school is a death knell; summer is incapable of continuing onwards afterwards, no matter what the prior weather patterns were.

There’s so many butterflies here.I hope they don’t die soon. They bring me so much joy, and yet I know they’ll be gone in a few months or less. Delicate things don’t survive the winter, not here.

The dance hall is loud and dark, and the girl looks up at him through a cloud of white cigarette smoke, eyes wide and pale blue. Her lips part open effortlessly, easily, and she’s crowned simultaneously in the wisps of her white-blonde hair and the smoke billowing out from her parted lips. In another life, perhaps she was a princess, or a queen, or a concubine; something to be beloved and put upon a pedestal. Yet now, only cheap imitation remains, like the fake, plastic pearls loped around her neck. ┬áThere’s a hollowness to her skin as she smiles, sad and small and somewhat unfeeling—and perhaps, in another life, the detective thought, she belonged to him. That life, however, was not this one.

What if circumstances make us love who we love. What if lovers promise to love each other throughout eternity, only to find themselves reincarnated; one going mad from the pain of losing the glory they used to have, and the other finding themselves and their love so very different that there is no way they can love anymore.

Bricks are, by nature, scuffed up and old. Yet together they almost always seem beautiful.