THE GHOSTING OF GRETEL 

Car park. Sun bouncing off the endless slab.
She likes things concrete.

She likes her things without direction.

She dives into open space
with the fondness of a memory.

The store is bounty. She wants to close
her eyes and steal through the isles

like a shadow, shadow of her brother
and just grab at whatever is dearest.

But her hands, her arms, her legs, all stale.
She pushes her cart like the little prison

it is, scouring the bright lanes for offerings
for something to take home again.

She feeds her house shrapnel; wood
and phantom urges and the slivers of light

that touch the skin come morning.
She burns candles like apparitions.

Because she knows that whatever you
leave behind, you take with you.

And she carries that, like a strangeness
in the blood; sullen ground, the lie of family.


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Milla van der Have (1975) is a Gemini. She writes poems and short stories and is currently knee-deep in a novel. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Rust+Moth, Mud Season Review and Bird’s Thumb. She is the author of Ghosts of Old Virginny (2015, Aldrich Press), a chapbook about Virginia City, Nevada. Milla lives in Utrecht, The Netherlands, with her wife and 2 badass rabbits.