Shallow Dance

by Matty Sullivan

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But What If I'm Wrong?

Lately, I’ve been thinking about ghosts. Not just spirits (whatever those are) but ghosts. You know, leftovers.

When something falls on the floor, the sound I hear is not the actual impact; it’s only a sound wave created by the impact. It’s a ghost. We only call it a sound wave because we receive it through the ear drums. For all we know, the impact also creates ultra-violet light waves or radio waves or some other freaky kind of waves which are completely inaccessible to us.

There are objects and people all around me. But I’m not really seeing them; I’m seeing the light which has bounced off of them and found its way to my eyeballs. I’m seeing ghosts. Who knows the actual, concrete nature of things? Chances are it’s pretty much the same as it appears to my eyes–but what if I’m wrong? What if we’re all wrong? What if the whole world is just a crazy trick of the light? Maybe what we’re seeing is actually the opposite of what we’re looking at! Light passes through a film negative, and the image it projects onto the screen is one which makes sense to us. But take a look at the negative! Don’t look like ‘reality’ at all, does it?

Ghosts. Even if what I see pleases me, I can’t deny it’s all subjective.

It’s on my mind because there was recently a death in my family. My little sister, at the end of August. Ever since she died, I’ve been wondering if I’ll have any ‘visitations’. The possibility makes me both hopeful and afraid. So far, nothing’s happened—unless memories count. Now that I think about it, it may be happening all the time and I’m just not picking up on it. Maybe I’m too much in my head. I’ve ruined my spiritual receptors, and I wouldn’t recognize a spiritual visitation if it punched me in the nose. Is that true? If so, it’s possible she’s here right now and I just don’t know it! Her ghost may be standing right next to me, becoming more and more exasperated at how closed-off I am to her presence!

Maybe that’s why I’m so angry all the time. She’s tried everything she can and none of it’s gotten through. All she can do is stand there projecting waves of emotion at me—sadness, happiness, confusion, anger, love. Fear. The only thing getting through to me is the anger. It’s the only part of the spectrum I’m open to.

She must be very disappointed in me.

Hey, Darcy. If you’re reading this, all I can say is I’m sorry. I’m no good at this.