Unholy Trinity: Ghosts Behaving Badly by Margo Rife

Our church worships at the altar of the Unholy Trinity. Its gospels are delivered as a trio of dark drabbles, linked so that Three become One. All hail the power of the Three.

I Jump On Your Grave

“Hey, Tik Tok followers. I found her grave. 

Ramoana died in gym class. Jump-roped fifteen times. Dropped dead.

Miss Blaha said she had a hole in her heart. 

We cheered when class was cancelled.

Ramoana was friendless. Ghostly pale. Thin shaky voice. Blue lips. A creep.

Today she turns sixteen so I’m jump-roping sixteen times on her grave.

Setting the phone on her tombstone.

One… two… three…

“Tik Tok Fans. Call for help. I fell through a hole.

 It’s dark. My foot’s twisted.”

Hello, Kelsey. Remember me? Ramoana. How about Double Dutch? 

On the count of 16 you join me.

Are You Still Mine?

Sergeant Yuma and partner Coe enter an apartment 

smelling of candles and earth. A grey cat hisses and hides.

A woman sits at a potter’s wheel, forehead in a mound of 

clay. Yuma gently lifts her chin.  

Brown eyes bulge from their sockets; mouth tight

over teeth in a primal scream. No signs of violence. 

On her lower arms are clay handprints. When Yuma runs them

through the database he finds a match.

“Sam Wheat. Stalker. Restraining order, this address. Died in a crash yesterday.”

“But this clay’s still wet?”

Record player turns on. I hunger, hunger for your touch.

The Sin Eater

“You’re late. Clock chimed. Heard it 6 feet under.”

“Rainin’, Dude. Soakin’ your grave.”

“Add another puncture to your arm?” 

“Yeah. Tired and high.”

“Bring your spoon?”

“Mercy, Roy.”

“Did you show me mercy?”

“You wanted to escape this shithole world.”

“Pokin’ that black tar H in my vein?” 

“I repent.”

Shovin’ me half-dead in this hole?”

“Mea culpa.”

“Dig in.” 


“Workin’ my bones. Gonna surface soon.”


“Eat your sins.”

“There’s worms and pesticides.”

“Soul food, Roy. Dig in.”

“I’ve paid for my sins.”

“It’s your last meal. Eat dirt and die.”

“Delicious. I’m beggin’. Set me free?”

Margo Rife

Margo Rife has short stories and poetry published in Trembling with FearThe Wrong Coat AnthologyCovid ChroniclesIdle Ink, The Daily Drunk Mag and an upcoming Transmundane Press Time Anthology. Margo’s monologues and short plays have been staged at various theatres. Pre-pandemic Margo was editor of Basement Stories podcast from the studio at the LaGrange Public Library.

Twitter: @rife_margo         https://newplayexchange.org/users/28750/margo-rife

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