Publication date: Spring 2019
25 pages, 6” x 9”
Read Press Release (PDF)
Ghost/Home: A Beginner’s Guide to Being Haunted traces the course of a disease through a body, a ghost through a home, and a feeling through the language that tries to hold it. How does illness travel through us? What do we do with the parts of ourselves we feel but cannot grasp? Where are the ghosts in our lives, and what are their names? In diagrams of ghosts, readings of Clarice Lispector, photographs, interviews, and lyric prose, Ghost/Home extends these questions into uncharted territory. The chapbook seeks to do the impossible: to diagram the elusive, the invisible, the haunting. Like its cover—an early Anna Atkins cyanotype, which transforms an image of algae into a ghostly figure—Ghost/Home transforms the experience of living with Crohn’s disease into an incalculable, invisible, but pervasive entity.
PRAISE“Through urgent, intimate prose and diagrams of hauntings, Ghost/Home shows us that ghosts are more than billowing curtains and flashes of light—ghosts are Crohn’s, ghosts are history, ghosts are feelings with nowhere to go. Rather than an exorcism, Sweeney coordinates a calling-in, a reckoning with the spirits that move through his body and shape his life.”
– Amy Berkowitz
“A tender embrace, this text will haunt you and heal you. A remarkable work; I couldn’t recommend this more.”
– Janice Lee
“What is it to be inhabited? What happens when it’s your body that is haunted? Whose is your body anyway? Ghost/Home asks all the right questions about flesh and spirit and health and not-health and how we live with our inheritances. All that and Clarice Lispector too!! An
– Rebecca Brown
Dennis James Sweeney’s fiction, nonfiction, and poetry have appeared in Crazyhorse, Five Points, Ninth Letter, The New York Times, and The Southern Review, among many others. He is a Small Press Editor of Entropy, the recipient of an MFA from Oregon State University, and a former Fulbright fellow in Malta. Originally from Cincinnati, he lives in Amherst, Massachusetts, where he is a doctoral candidate in Creative Writing at the University of Denver. He is the author of three previous chapbooks: Poems About Moss, THREATS, and What They Took Away.
“On Ghost/Home and Haunting” - Kenyon Review
“Learning to be Haunted” - The Rumpus
“Ghost/Home: A Beginners Guide to Being Haunted” - Heavy Feather Review