Ghost Writer’s Apprentice 

He’s assigned the most invisible
jobs: Ramp Closed or Milwaukee
Right Lane. It takes its toll
after the one hundredth mile marker, 
and he starts to speculate about
the blur of passengers and mufflers 
and songs he can’t hear
through closed windows. Alive, 
he never gave them a thought. 
Never wondered who wrote Rest Area  

or the numbers and names 
of exits on highway tickets he handed  

to booth operators, then sped off. 
He would have said bureaucrats  

if pressed, but no one asked. 
Sometimes he conjures the small print  

on leases, death certificates, estate
sales. Before he can inhabit 

the spaces of others, he must
experience humility, an absence  

of ego. Yield. And he has begun to —
a white line down a divided highway.   

Not solid, but broken. Passing 
into anonymity, and back. 

—Marilyn Annucci, Madison, WI