half-hearted ghosts
pull themselves out of a smoldering cigarette
to float formlessly in the harsh air.

the necromancer, young and unwitting
takes a second drag
from his reverse funeral pyre
and exhales
another smudged memory.

the conjurations cannot shake death's stench;
they track its residue over his lungs
with their sluggish footprints.

murky spirits
dissipate into the bleak air
as Thanatos hunts down the necromancer
and lays a hand on his heart:
a damning stain
which steals his voice -
consumes his lungs -
kidnaps his desires.

in time, the stain spreads
eating away at the necromancer's decrepit body
and he is dragged down into oblivion
in revenge for the stolen spirits he brought forth.