Moonscape Two Prose Poems by Jess Mize


The moon was once worshiped by our ancestors. Secretly, and with much fuss, but only in certain company. She had a sex, obviously, and was called Salome, Cynthia, Astarte. The lovers sleeping with mouths agape are intertwined upon a cool grass bed at midnight. There are emerald serpents which about weeping willows perform the noun caduceus. Seeking for solace in a ziggurat where your winter cassock rustles, through the night you hallucinate amid an atavistic ceremony. What I notice is your future, novice of this civilized epoch, hunched over by the winters and by the sport of the cosmos; dexterously procreating with tools and with colours.

The Ghost Who Walks

April through December, the months drag by; waiting for the slumbering season.

In May I celebrate spring by gathering roses and lilies, crocuses and violets, hyacinths and narcissuses in lush meadows; until Pluto rises from his subterranean abyss and makes me his bride.

In June I practice the piano. Debussy and Scarlatti, mostly. I hear my parents scraping their balding heads, yesterday’s lobster still beneath their fingernails, with the subtle pull of my Humbert Humbert spiderweb.

Vacation comes in July. You can find me naked on the beach, in sunlight without deception, staring at the cloudless sky, completely numb. At least my fair skin is becoming bronze by gold.

August already! The languorous heat stupefies me so I vegetate indoors, watching blasé classic movies in black and white. Nostalgic for garbage. Desperately in search of lost time.

September brings the hope of a slight respite. The colours of the dead leaves on the dirty ground are a small consolation prize; a reminder that All Hallows Eve is near.

I spend the whole of October preparing for the Day of the Dead. I become an ascetic. I meditate to the sound of laughing children; vandalous teenagers with two dozen cartons of eggs and hot sauce in their bags.

On November the first, I feel alive for the only day of the year. All the ignored dead souls console my loneliness. Like a real ghost I walk amidst them, passing out trinkets and listening to their problems. Some grab hold of me tightly, gasping with short breaths, unable to speak even to say thank you. Others ask about my life. Imagine! So I take them on a walk through the forest glade, where I passed my misspent youth and learned to be like them; alone, pale, disconsolate. Most want me to deliver a message to their families, their friends. They should as well ask to put it in a bottle and drop it in the ocean, to be recovered in future centuries. No one listens to me either.

Jess Mize is a blonde-haired surfer girl from South Carolina. Her favourite author is Stephen King.Vampire Weekend three albums in stores now.