Hamlet junior

Dad came to visit me last night
– Alright?
he said
hovering awkwardly over the bed
well… given he’d been dead for years
then suddenly appears
like this
I couldn’t immediately say yes

– Harken to my warning!
I yawned
:: Wha’d’ya mean harken? I said
plumping the pillows behind my head
(because I got the impression
this ghostly session
might go on a bit
and I wanted to be more comfortable for it)

I have to say he looked amazing
in and out
throwing his glowing arms about
brown eyes burning
bald head turning
a full three sixty

:: Hey! That’s pretty tricksy
– Sorry. We’re obliged to do this shit
For a bit
he said
sinking sadly to the bottom of the bed
– Technically it’s called ‘haunting’
code for all the bullshit flaunting
you have to do to keep in trim
Anyway – nice to see you, Jim

:: Nice to see you
I said
:: But I wish you were alive instead
– Christ! You’re not the only one!
I can’t tell you how stupid all this is, son
You’re suddenly weirdly obsessed with mirrors
and hanging about on the banks of rivers

:: So…no change there, then, since you died?
I replied
– What’d’ya mean?
:: Well – you’ve always been
a bit obsessed with your looks
and you had quite a collection of fishing hooks
I dunno – maybe you’re just tied
to all the things you did before you died

– Listen! I’m the one to harken to
not you.
:: Sorry. All ears, I said
sitting more upright in bed
doing my best to concentrate
I was tired, it was late
and even though this should be exciting
eight hours straight was more inviting

– Forgive me, my son
he went on
– Ever since they pulled the plug in hospital
I’ve become quite forgetful
I mean – it takes me all year
just to comb my hair
:: What hair?
There’s nothing there!

– See what I mean? he said
swiping his head
his ghastly hand passing straight through it
– A simple thing like that and I just can’t do it
They say RIP
but look at me
I look like I’ve just been dug up
:: Sorry to bring the subject up

– But soft! Methinks I scent the morning air
he glared
suddenly flapping his arms like a bird
not so much scary as completely absurd
:: What’s with all this bullshit lingo?
What are we playing? Hamlet bingo?
Can’t you just give me the whole thing straight?
I get up early and it’s really late

– Adieu, adieu, adieu! Remember me!
My hour is almost come…!
:: You’re not the only one
Didn’t you have some kind of warning?
Or have you run out of time now it’s morning?
My father just glared and shook his head
and disappeared from the end of the bed

:: Rest, rest, perturbèd spirit
Thanks for the visit
I mean – I thought you might have a bit more to say
Given how long you’ve been away
But aside from all the haunting and such
I suppose we never did talk that much
Who needs a ghost, come from the grave
To tell us how better we could’ve behaved?

2 thoughts on “Hamlet junior

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