No one prepares a four year old,
tip-toeing back to her bed in the cold night,
to see a ghost--
a looming shadow at the end of the hall,
a draped sheet with two darkened circles
for eye holes,
a trick-or-treat costume: not allowed
in her home, for fear
of the devil.
No one knew,
that the the devil had already
come upon her,
laughing heartily, and not at night.
He had been her best friend, her brother.
At four, she had already played with the devil
She gathered the ghost in her arms,
cloaked herself in its shadow,
carried it back to bed and,
in the secret of the dark night,
begged to know its white innocence.