The Helpful Dead

Following on, it seems, directly from last week’s ETTO about having some time off to be dead, we have this by Leila Chatti:


Leila uses the structure of the poem to undercut initially presented meanings — “she fishes the black tongue” sounds portentous, until it is recontextualised into the sock. “Slipping coins in the mouth” references the ritual of placing a coin in the mouth of the dead (a payment to cross the river in the afterlife), and the lesson being taught here. It’s mundane, it’s simple, but these are the things where people left their marks through repeated steps and years of finding the right way, for a small thing.

Anyone who has lost someone important to them know the sentiment of them having so much to teach you — and that this isn’t over now that they’re dead. These ghost rattle around inside you after they are gone, or they wrap around you, a kind of headed pelt you can ask questions of as you go. They can answer with the leftover air in their skin. It doesn’t last forever, but it last a long while.

Read it in Breakwater Review.


I enjoyed this occult calendar.


This week’s song (mix) is XEN GRIFFEY by THERAVADA



Thanks for reading Etch To Their Own, I have that Friday feeling we all know and love. Sorry it’s a short one, I have driven to Dorset to see the sea, I hope. This was written by @CJEggett and he only has eye for you.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.