The Haunting of You - Oliver Cocks

The Haunting of You - Oliver Cocks



  Well. Here I am. Or am I?

  A sunset inside me, soon to cede to the ghostly resonances of star and of moon. But can I help it? Can I do anything other than be? Can I think anything other than thought, feel anything other than feeling?

  I have slipped on the soap of wisdom in the bathtub of the universe and cracked open my head. Or so it seems. Perhaps I’m better off like this, loping towards the light of an open door that I never reach. Perhaps I’m better off not being me (I think?). Oh well. Guess that’s that.



  That is that, and that is a fact. Perhaps.


  It’s almost noon, and the sun is bleeding truth.

  I stroll into the day’s myriad potentialities. I am a figure of the future haunted by the present, heir to a thousand exorcisms, perennial guest at a banquet of ghosts. And yet, today nothing can stop me.

  I stroll through a sun-daubed park, lost in thoughts of you. I remember the fire we shared together. I remember the radiance of your tears. I remember us.

  I sigh. No use now. You’re gone.

  The sky seems built of coins, and the wind murmurs their tinkling clinking. The spring-time air ripples with summer’s eventuality.

  I stroll around, then find a bench. Well. Here I am. I am here.

  Countless mutilations lie between then and now, infinite transmutations separate was and is. To move forward is to shed selves like a snake shedding skins. And yet, I find myself here, where I have always been. I find myself as I am, no more. Behind lie a hundred sunderings, and ahead a thousand unravellings- which is much as it has ever been.

  I sit for some time, hemmed in thought. Then I stand up and return to The Haunting of You.


  I scribble away. On my. Quest.

  I take woe and bliss and morph them into light. I take rage and confusion and transform them into sound and colour. I take you, and turn you into words, filling your veins with ink, breathing paper into your lungs. I take you, and nothing more is left.

 A clock tolls slow strokes on the wall behind, marking the moments without you. I need to clean my desk, I think to myself, as I do every time that I look at it.

  Outside, birds coo and croon and neighbours trundle past on the street below. Dusk is beginning to whittle away the afternoon. The sky will soon be a mess of red and amber, ready to ebb.

  I scribble away, intent upon my task.


  My inside is my outside. 

  I have voyaged seas to lay only a few small trinkets at a temple of ageless iron. I chuff into oblivion, and yet I am as I am. More’s the pity. 

  I have upturned all stones, drained all seas, shattered all mountains, and built a mansion out of my blood to find a question, but all I find are answers. I long to be unfathomable, but my mystery is stolen day in day out.


  I’m passing from writing in a fit of feverish sanity when I see him through a window. Tall, blonde, wavy hair, hooded eyes. A little chubby, to be sure, but then, who am I to talk?

  I must admit I’m drawn to him. He has entered my life as instantaneously as breath, as easy laughter, as death and absence. What does that say?

  I begin to ponder our life together. He is certainly handsome, in an unassuming kind of way. I could do worse.

  For the first time in months, I don’t feel the need to write frenetically. I feel something new arising.

  Well, maybe.


  I see him from my window every day. Soon, I begin to trace his steps. He has recently moved into the neighbourhood, and lives around the corner from me. He comes to feed the pigeons in the park every day.


  I work upon The Haunting of You.

  I scribble.

  And scribble.


  And scribble and scribble (…and scribble and scribble and scribble and scribble and etc.).


  I mark him every day from my window, drinking in his air, his clumsy graces, his way of moving.

  Then, one mild autumn day, I finally feel ready. I summon up my courage and prepare myself to approach him.


Written by Oliver Cocks

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