I wandered around my grandparents'
Home and saw the forbidden door ajar.
Although locked, they told me to steer
Clear, one step in was one step too far.
The room was gloomy, draped in webs,
With a single painting on the wall,
Lighted by a flickering bulb, imploring
Me to flee from the painting’s call.
She looks at me with longing eyes,
The girl in the painting on the wall.
Alive she seems on her swing, legs
Dangling, holding a torn ragged doll.
She’s not alone, children frolic around
Her beside the lake and wild grass.
Yet she swings gazing intently at my
Soul, willing me to touch the frame glass.
My hands obey and reach for her world
And I find myself pulled inside.
I stood before the girl. Hey friend,
I’m Sally, she said, and smiled wide.
We swam in the lake, played tag, and
Enjoyed a picnic, but the sun never sank.
Minutes rolled to hours and hours, days.
Indeed, time was merely a divine prank.
What’s your name? I would ask the other
Children, but none of them knew.
I’d ask where they came from,
But mumbles they’d only spew.
Sally I must go home! Please help me!
Don’t you like it here? We are friends.
Friends don’t leave, you understand?
Those who come, their stay never ends.
Her smile then twists to a fiendish grin
Revealing jagged, rotten yellow fangs.
Sally giveth, Sally taketh away, Sally
Stole my heart today, the children sang.
Wherever I ran, I’d end up at the same place,
Sally on her swing beneath the oak tree.
She then waved at the glassy blue sky.
My grandparents looked down upon us
With wicked smiles and laughing eyes.
You’ve been a naughty boy, Paul.
Now you’re in the painting on the wall.