Napo 28

I ignored today's napo writing prompt because something's been on my mind lately. A few weeks ago, B was driving across the country alone, and he came home with the wildest of ghost stories. I'm not one to believe ghost stories; in fact, they don't scare me in the slightest because I don't believe in ghosts, demons, or anything of the sort. I just firmly don't and I've always been that way. This story, though, was scary, but for a different reason.
I want to develop this poem a little more -- interweave more of the theme of the fear of loneliness into the poem throughout to make the ending punch more. I like this idea, so I'll come back to this later and hopefully develop it into a poem.

Ghost Story

My husband tells me a ghost story
Over breakfast: last night, he says,
He drove through the thickest fog
In the deadest part of Texas.
Even the gold from his headlights
wasn’t enough to illuminate
the winding road before him.

No town for twenty miles east.
No town for thirty miles west.
He sailed through brushland
Dreaming of coming home
Joining me here in the warmth
Of our bed, listening to the rhythm
Of my breath, the cat’s purr, the hums
Of life. 2am. The darkest hour.
A two-lane road. No shoulder.
His side of the bed, empty,
Cold as a corpse.

An infinity of gray darkness
On every horizon. He swallowed
The fear in his throat, another swig
Of flat red bull. He white-knuckled
the steering wheel. In the darkness,
On the road, the mind begins to wander
To the darkest thoughts, to loneliness.

Mine does too, I say and take a sip of coffee.
And loneliness can make a man go mad.
And for a moment I imagine sitting here,
At the kitchen table, across me, an empty chair
Filled only with the morning sun.

The fog broke for just a moment,
Somewhere in the middle of this nowhere.
A moment of clarity, of sky so dark
It swallows any man. And there,
On the roadside, a man so old
He bends to the earth
Clutches a suitcase,
Journeys into the abyss.

My husband tells me this.
I saw him. I swear. He says.
I shake my head in disbelief.
Your imagination.

But he insists, tells me
He thought of pulling over
On the roadside, and would
Had it not been for the fog.
He shutters. He was either real
Or a ghost, which my husband
Knows I don’t believe in.

And as I take another sip of coffee,
My mind wanders out to the brushland,
the old man, wandering alone now
in the light of day, maybe he reached
his destination, whether the next town
or the next life. A cold chill travels
up my spine as I consider what fills me
with more fear: the ghost roaming
the Texas countryside, or
the thought that the world
We live in would turn out its lights
While a man so old wandered

Through the fog, so lost and so alone.