Eric Wertheimer


There are four balloons
In my house. I live in the house
With four balloons, two get wells

And one happy birthday and one
You did it. One lives in the back of a
Closet at the end of a hollow plastic stick.

It only moves when I find it. But it
Never leaves. The other three migrate
Along the ceiling, riding

Registered air, a smooth pasture
Not unmoved as the seasons require—
Send them shining here all around.

They progress from room to room and
Fool me with their corporation.
But they are my ghosts.

But they surprise me with their bridal entries
And their mocking murmurs,
Their bright entrapment, their

Lively adventures in freedom.
The spirit of Mickey Mouse inhabits them
And with their demise, one by one,

I plan to inspire him and then
Wonder who I am when I speak.
I am amazed they do not die now, that they

Are stable. Unlike the living,
They never lose it. When people are
Here, I do not notice them.



This is obviously a domestic, vaguely gothic poem. The poem is about a year alone.