smoke and mirrors

went to a psychic last night

before you ask


i don’t believe in any of it

all smoke and mirrors

illusionary medicine to calm a weary mind

she offered palm readings and tarot cards

it smelled of incense and herbs in the small candle lit room

she greeted me and took my hand and asked how she could help me

i gave a small evil grin and replied

shouldn’t you already know

she laughed at that

a full body laugh that was infectious and spread to split my face into huge grin

she nodded and beckoned for me to sit

she pulled out the cards and shook her head

i didn’t say a word

waiting to see what her next move would be

she snapped her fingers and the lights went out and five candles flared to life around us

a mist seemed to roll into the room

i was impressed with the theatrics of it all

then she looked at me and said something in another tongue

it was her voice but a second seemed to resonate slightly out of sync

she reached over and put my hands on to the glass orb in the center of the table

it vibrated softly and the clear glass coalesced with a verdant smoke inside

i stared as the smoke swirled

hypnotized by the tendrils swimming about with her off two voices humming and the strange pulse thrumming inside of it

you’ve come to see the sspirit

i said nothing


to see the dead

the color shifted from green to sepia tones

in the center of the orb a vision appeared

it was me laying on the floor with a sketchpad trying to draw a castle

it flickered and there i was in high school leaning against a locker with a petite brunette hanging on every word i uttered

there i was outside the air force recruitment agency with a man in a green outfit talking and pleading

it was my last day home opening up the truck door and finding a lighter and note from one of my best friends in the seat

she had a knife and i was trying to wrestle it from her as she screamed silently about killing herself

it was me on the floor of the kitchen sobbing as she set her keys on the counter and turned to walk away

it was a thousand images

one after the other in rapid succession

dizzying but i couldn’t look away

and then a last one

a her i had never seen before

staring into my eyes so intently

locking me onto her beautiful face

and i watched as i turned my face away and the hurt blossomed as she kept staring

then the ball went dark

just another piece of glass

the mist dissipated

the candles sputtered out

the lights slowly came back on

i sat with tears streaming openly down my cheeks

the psychic looked at me sadly and passed me a tissue to wipe my eyes

gave me a moment to compose myself

that’ll be fifty dollars

i said nothing and passed her the cash

not trusting myself to speak

did you see what you wanted

i shook my head yes but it was noncommittal at best

it isn’t often someone comes in for this and it doesn’t always work but i hope you got some closure

i finally spoke

thank you

and i left and drive home as the visions replayed to n my head

it’s a powerful thing

having a seance for all your dreams that died

and that bittersweet glimpse of one not even born

one that will eventually die as well

so if you ask me if i believe in psychics and fortune teller

the answer is no

it’s all smoke and mirrors

like every thing else

it is an illusion

just holistic medicine for the weary mind


20 thoughts on “smoke and mirrors

  1. Between the lines of your writing there is a touch of sinister, bad boy, and genius. And then comes into view…the little boy who hung his heart on the moon for all to see! Never a dull moment when reading your work!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. you are terrible for my fledgling ego. and i couldn’t thank you more. i try my damnedest to not let that little boy vanish. for all my cynicism i long to be carefree and happy. maybe the next deal of the cards.


          1. Mike, you are a dynamite writer. I love the craft so very much, and I admire many writers here! You should look into writing a movie script?

            Liked by 2 people

            1. I am slowly working on a novel. About fifty thousand words in. But then I get distracted and write thirty or forty poems. And short stories. One day the words won’t sing and I’ll be terribly bored. Until then though…

              Liked by 1 person

              1. Awesome! Congrats. I’m writing a children’s poetry book for disabled children, with some of my photos of beautiful though disabled animals. Animals and children are very resilient! And That’s where “fairytalesbyMyth” comes in to play. Mike, I still believe your writing should be recognized as a great contender.Now that I have taken notice, I look forward to coming home and escaping into your categorical radical sense of any which way the wind blows!

                Liked by 1 person

                1. As a kid I worked at Easter Seals with my Aunt that was a teacher there. I have a very soft spot for differently abled kids. Let me know when the book is done so I can buy a copy. And I hope to keep you entertained for a long time to come.


                  1. It will be wonderful to remain your fan. And thank you for the follow! What an honor to have you aboard! I can’t even believe I have followers! But I love all their beautiful faces! 🤗

                    Liked by 1 person

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