This weeks Saturday Poetry, matched with mobile photography/art is entitled “Ghosts and Fashion’ by Elaine Equi. Equi was born in Oak Park, Illinois, in 1953. She received a BA and an MA in English from Columbia College, where she taught a poetry workshop for several years after graduating. Along with her husband, Jerome Sala, she was active in Chicago’s performance poetry scene.
Equi’s first book, Federal Woman, was published in 1978 by Danaides Press. She has written over ten books of poetry, including Sentences and Rain (Coffee House Press, 2015); Click and Clone (Coffee House Press, 2011); Ripple Effect: New and Selected Poems (Coffee House Press, 2007), which was shortlisted for the 2008 International Griffin Poetry Prize; The Cloud of Knowable Things (Coffee House Press, 2003); and Voice-Over (Coffee House Press, 1999), chosen by Thom Gunn for the San Francisco State Poetry Award. Equi lives in New York City and teaches in the Master of Fine Arts program at The New School.
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Ghosts and Fashion ©Elaine Equi
Although it no longer has a body
to cover out of a sense of decorum,
the ghost must still consider fashion—
must clothe its invisibility in something
if it is to “appear” in public.
Some traditional specters favor
the simple shroud—
a toga of ectoplasm
swirling around them.
While others opt for lightweight versions
of once familiar tee shirts and jeans.
Perhaps being thought-forms,
they can change their outfits instantly—
or if they were loved ones,
it is we who clothe them
like dolls from memory.
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