Walking up the rickety stairs,
Patchouli and cigarette smoke
combat for supremacy
Before I even reach the door,
and I step through to see
The everyday undead scattered on the thick carpet like so many corpses blown out of Wednesday Addams' haunted dollhouse.
Maybe it wasn't wise to come.
A cd player informs me that, indeed,
Bela Lugosi's dead,
And I cautiously move into the living room.
Ruby lips and ivory faces emerge from the gloom,
Incurious glances marking my progress
As an acolyte guides me to the Queen of the festivities
Holding court in a corner of the living room.
Her waist-length silver-gilt hair and damp skin like fresh camellias gleam in the candlelight,
A studded black goblet brimming with Jack Daniels
Is handed to her,
A token of homage she eagerly welcomes
while nodding me forward.
Whispers behind me tell her story,
Of how she's seen a thing or two in her time,
And why her flat stare and Theda Bara smile give glimpses of her bottomless occult wisdom.
As her slim fingers play with a knotted black necklace,
She considers me long before finally declaring,
--"My God, you're an old soul"--
And she pats the cushion next to her,
An invitation to drink deep and close of her dark knowledge.
A cup of something unknown is pressed into my hand
and I sip, hanging onto every arcane word she utters.
Night slowly fades into dawn
and I wake cold and stiff from a kitchen floor sleep
only to see the Queen buttoning the cuffs on her white poplin shirt.
Smoothing her tweed skirt, she steps into her pumps,
Grips her cup of coffee,
And with a cheery wave, leaves for work.
Happy Hallowe'en, everyone!