Loveliest Ghost

Tony Peppercorn rode in on driftwood, big and tall and made of potato and fiber; he walked up to Lulu Tomato with Saint Elmo in his belly, ready to pour his heart out to her like a frozen pond draining in Springtime, through creek and river to the sea, the only route it could possibly go, you’re the only girl that could make my bicycle spin, he’d say, but when he stopped in front of her, in the flesh, for real, fluttering like an epileptic butterfly, and she lifted her snapdragon eyes in that slow motion method of hers, he melted into a puddle of lukewarm dishwater that she didn’t even notice so she stepped in it, splashing thirteen raisins that were gathered, huddled under a blithering vine, to discuss overthrowing the government and, despite being hardcore revolutionaries, they didn’t mind the interruption when they looked up and saw how pretty Lulu Tomato was, and how ripe, and how embarrassed and remorseful she was, a sweet, sweet soul, even picking up one of the disenfranchised raisins and giving it a gentle kiss that turned it into a grateful grape; Lulu put the grape into her pocket, thinking ‘I can make some wine,’ Lulu, always the optimist, kept floating down the street, the prettiest ghost ever, (because something this lovely can’t stay alive forever) enchanting the universe with her charm; the sun and the moon both agreed they’ll take turns loving her — and that’s why they stay on opposite sides of the Earth — everything spinning, whirling,  and Tony Peppercorn looked up through watery eyes and his splashed-out, boot-crushed, oil-slicked, bottomed-out, discarded, disused heart at the sky-parade, the celestial carnival, lily limericks spreading eternal myths to the end of everything, and he wondered how he could compete with the stars that seemed to shine just for her, the heat and energy emanating everywhere. Lulu Tomato, the loveliest ghost, let me pick a cilantro top for you.

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