Who doesn’t enjoy a spooky poems about ghosts? Poltergeists and apparitions are a regular staple of literature and film. Perhaps it is time for some haunted haiku or perhaps some spectral sonnets. Shadow of Iris presents five original ghost poems of our own, including a free verse ghost story. It’s time for you to get possessed by some poetry!
Fear of Ghosts
by Justin Thyme
I see pale ghosts
as I walk through the long corridors
of an old and cold hospital.
Fluorescent lights flicker
over the worried faces of visitors,
but I know who has lived
and who has died
before even the doctor does.
Fear is a tranquilizer;
it holds off the change.
God keeps interfering,
as I’m stretched out and drawn,
up and down the hall.
Phantoms pull at my feet
as I try to get back
to just where I left you.
You don’t know it yet,
but your tears fall
on an empty shell.
by Dustin Down
A ghost sits next to you,
and you feel a chill.
This is the ghost of yesterday;
he holds tomorrow in his hand,
but when you reach for it
he snatches it away—
The breath of his movement
is a cold snap, a hallow feeling,
leaving you so still
a single touch could shatter you.
by Polly Morphus
Ghosts come unawares
and begin to gnaw away
at the old house in queer places
so that even while the two chimneys
continue to pour out thick black smoke,
pieces of the house begin to drip away.
In the swirling mixture of melt,
shuddering faces look out
and burst into a peculiar song
of piquant pang and penitence.
The house casually begins to slide
down the steep hill, and then off it goes
from this world to the next.
Spooks and Specters
by the Eclectic Poet
with an aberrant form:
and large sad eyes.
that wears black lingerie
with such curves and shapes:
she is to die for,
but you will never ever
On a walk in the cemetery,
you see a sad marble angel.
Her eyes of rock sleep—
they are closed shut tight.
But as you near,
they open and stare.
that walks up and down
the curving stairs
in the old mansion
through all hours of the night—
her head hangs to one side,
the side where the neck snapped
after she tripped over the top step
and fell the rest the way down.
In the empty room above,
you hear distant uneven cackles
and footsteps—back and forth:
It’s a nervous ghost
afraid of its missing shadow.
On a hot summer’s night
this ghost passes through you
and leaves you with a chill.
They said your lechery
was a disease, and
they kept you bound
to attic wall for forty years
until you died.
Yet still you try come
down here—as I sleep.
I hear your low soft moans,
and the rattle of your chains
that never break.
In the long hall, each night,
two twins appear
in long nightgowns
and screaming in terror
as their mother-in-law’s knife
comes down again.
that pulls your hair
and pinches your feet
always just before
you are ready to nod off:
so long as he has no rest,
then why should you?
A disembodied voice
and then a bang and a knock
in the room next to yours;
chairs move as
furniture is pushed
out into the hall;
this ghost wants its room
empty and alone.
A little ghost
that is afraid of the dark.
She switches on the lights,
all of them, first downstairs—
then as you turn those off,
she goes upstairs
and does the same thing
all over again.
well, you see, her head
pops out of the toilet
where the murderer drowned her—
she’ll give you a fright
on a cold winter night.
Suddenly you feel despair,
a deep sadness overwhelms you,
and you can’t move,
not a single muscle.
You just lay motionless in terror,
until the ghost, ever so slowly
forgets, and then goes away.
by Paul Bearer
The little girl darted out in front of our car.
I slammed on the breaks, and we skidded to a stop—
even as we were were still gasping for breath.
My wife and I jumped out of the car in a panic
and started to search for the little girl.
It was pitch black, and the air was wet with fog.
We could not find a trace of her. Finally,
we both agreed that it must have been a deer, and
that the night had played an evil trick on our eyes.
So we got back into the car and drove on.
Around the next bend of the old country road,
our headlights flashed upon a car wreck most cruel—
the car had been scraped along one side
and perhaps pushed, such that it had crashed into a tree.
In the front, we could see two mangled bodies,
but in the rear, a door mysteriously hung open.
Once again getting out of our car,
we rushed to the scene of the accident.
We checked the two bodies, and we winced.
Their heads had hit the windshield,
and what we saw was bloody and nasty and unfair—
we looked to the open door and saw a small bloody print.
We followed little drops of blood,
to a nearby bridge over a walking path.
They lead off the road to the area under the bridge,
where there was just enough light from our headlights
to see underneath.
We found her there, huddled in the shadows.
She was hunched over and hugging her knees,
a crying little girl shaking with fear—
we went to her immediately,
and tried to speak to her and to clam her.
She recoiled as my wife tried to touch her—
she bled at the head from a serious scrape,
but it was the only wound that we could find,
so we were hopeful she might be okay—
after much coaxing and soft cooing from my wife,
she consented to let me pick her up.
We rushed her to the car,
and with my wife cradling her in the back,
I got behind the wheel, and begin to drive
as fast I dare, to the nearest country town.
We’d barely driven more than five minutes
when my wife let out a gasp—
in the rear view mirror I could see only black,
so I stopped the car and turned the lights on,
then looked in the back seat.
My wife sat there alone, confused and bewildered—
she’s gone, was all she could say.
We drove back to the scene of the accident,
and by now it was twilight, the sky a purplish bruise—
the smashed car was gone, but in a nearby spot
we spied a small memorial, where flowers
that had recently been placed had already begun to wilt.
Parking the car, we got out and read the memorial,
it told the sad tale of a family hit
by what must have been a drunk driver.
The mother and father had died instantly,
but the little girl had sought refuge under the bridge—
she’d been found early the next morning
having bled to death from her head—
the driver of the other car was never found.
Monsters are real, and ghosts are real too.
They live inside of us, and sometimes they win.
— Stephen King
We hope you enjoyed ghost poems—and we hope they inspire you to your own spooky sestinas or even a bloodcurdling ballad or two. Don’t forget to subscribe to our poetry updates so that you don’t miss any of our new poems.