“Ghost Dog” by Lindsay Ahl
Lindsay Ahl’s chapbook, The Abyssians, was a finalist for the 2013 National Poetry Chapbook Award. Her poetry has appeared in Barrow Street, RHINO, Vellum, Drunken Boat, New Delta Review, and many others. Her fiction includes a novel, Desire, out with Coffee House Press, and stories in The Brooklyn Rail, BOMB Magazine, Fiction magazine, and others. She publishes Shadowgraph, an arts & culture journal.
“You see that meadow over there?” An innocent enough question quickly takes on a life of its own. The hiker’s memory of the dog, long buried, brings a shade of her into the physical world. The dog is an echo of the question, “You see the meadow?” created as the memory of the dog and this place intertwine in both hikers’ minds. This is how memory propagates. One person’s direct experience becomes an echo in the mind of a person hearing of that experience. Both the echoing story and the original experience are real memories.
These two typefaces represent different forms of decay: Phosphorus Oxide disappears from the inside out and Roman Antique dissolves inward from the outside. Neither maintains complete spatial integrity against the white of the paper, perfect for a poem about the thin places between memory and the present moment.