As Ghosts Whisper

Today, I wrote a sonnet based on ‘Paper Forest’ by Emmy the Great. As I looked into the song, I found it was, in turn, inspired by  ‘Dancing Barefoot’ by Patti Smith. This, it  turned out, was dedicated to a lady called Jeanne Hébuterne who was the common-law wife to Modigliani. The story of this couple is a tragedy. Modigliani died of terbucular meningitis, urged on by a cocktail of drugs and alcohol he had frequently. A few days after his death, Hébuterne jumped out the top window of a five-floor house, killing herself and her unborn child.

(The phrase ‘after-glow of rapture’ is from Paper Forest by Emmy the Great; ‘losing sense of gravity’ is from ‘Dancing Barefoot’ by Patti Smith)

As Ghosts Whisper

‘Your sweet frame with prettiest face

should’ve been embraced, should’ve been my all
as we held hands to the wedding bells’ call
coaxing, ushering to new places,
to th’galleries of elongated faces,
unaware we’d soon hit death’s dark wall
in thick drug fumes where beer bottles fall
I’d fade, leaving you nought but broken traces.’

‘Now, here, I stand in the after-glow of rapture
as I slowly lose my sense of gravity
I tied my heart to yours, so I’ll sacrifice
my soul, my all, which you did fully capture
as we waltzed that waltz to insanity.
So, here, I’ll now repay this highest bride price’

Day 3 of 100 sonnets, inspired by ‘Paper Forest’, Emmy the Great


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