The phrase ‘On This Day’ got me thinking about ghosts. Those eternal, lingering, spectres are an excellent lens through which you can write about both time and place.
So, wherever you are reading this stop and look around.
Now, imagine all the eyes which once took in the world exactly where you are today – maybe 10, 50, 100, 200 or 500 years ago. Imagine all the stories and emotions that have existed in this place. Imagine the ghosts who lived where you live, the ghosts who enjoyed a sandwich or a lover’s closeness on the bench you’re sitting on, or the ghosts who went to work opposite the coffee shop you’re in, rushed down the very same street you’re looking at right now.
Try writing about this ghost.
Maybe start with what the world around you might have been like back then. Try to see the world through your Ghost Eyes, smell the world with your Ghost Nose and listen with your Ghost Ears – what do you hear? Is this ghost very different from you or are you and your ghost similar – do you have similar fears and longings? What would your ghost say to you? What would you like to tell your ghost? What was this day like for them, wherever in time they happen to exist?
Already, this could be more than enough material for you to start a poem or a short short story. However, you might want to add an historical layer to your piece. If so, have a look at the On This Day in Scottish History (or a similar relevant site depending on where you are) and see how that might affect your ghost. Are they aware of the significance of this day or has it passed them by? Maybe the events of the day have affected you or your ghost in some way that you two can talk about.
If you need a little extra Inspiration check out my ghost poem: https://www.lyrikline.org/en/poems/my-100-year-old-ghost-11691.
I hope this has given you some inspiration and I look forward to meeting your ghosts!
Ryan Van Winkle