Skip to content

Phantoms of Yesterday

September 18, 2015

by Sean Michael, August 2012

Marred, she stands with the phantoms of yesterday.

Humanity-Phantoms, Dark Souls

—Humanity-Phantoms, Dark Souls

She invites them to be seated with us and cast their shade,
Strip away the masquerades…

She tells me in a quiet tone,
That a black man snatched her, took her,
And damaged her with his lust.
He threatened her, he enjoyed her,
Said he would take her to a place where other men like him
would enjoy her.
“You’re mine, white girl.”
He attempted to destroy her.

I was speechless watching the phantoms dance morbidly.
Then: “Those fucking niggers,” I seethed.
She said: “Don’t say that. Don’t hate them all because a
stupid one hurt me when I was sixteen.”
“It’s not just blacks… I think I hate everyone,” I said.
“And everything.”
She left me there on the sofa, taking her phantoms
and leaving me with my own.


Posted for  dVerse Poets, Open Link Night #156, September 18, 2015


From → BLOG, Poetry

  1. Ugh. To be so wrapped in the hate,
    it is consuming.

    I can appreciate the anger at stories like hers – but we have to be careful with over generalizations.
    Or it will become that hate of everyone and everything.


    • This is true. It was difficult story to listen to. Already so full of anger and hate, it was only reason to feel more and to direct it somewhere new.


  2. A beautiful tale of love and hate – very soulful. If one person wrongs, it often creates a very wrong impression to a larger community. You handled such a sensitive matter very subtly and most importantly showing the right direction.


  3. “I think I hate everyone”…I can attest to that thinking as a SA survivor. Thankfully it can be overcome by love, patience…a lifetime’s worth from a faithful few.


  4. It understandable the hate, but hate destroys. Forgiveness builds.


    • I too know that hate destroys. the woman’s message, I believe, was forgiveness and through her pain she told me this.


  5. Powerful message here. We all have our phantoms…maybe he needs to speak of his so perhaps they won’t follow him around for the rest of his life.


  6. Oh hate.. contagion
    of all darkness
    and no
    but Love..
    it comes..
    no guarantees
    of it.. of course..
    to Live


  7. “Love as a vaccination” — I like that.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: