Once upon a time I read

Yellowed pages on my bed

Of magic snakes and daffodils

And gypsies selling candied pills

Till I stumbled on a poem

Ancient treehouse I called home

The beats sounded on the floor

As I moved from door to door

Verses lured me into rooms

Which I swept with gilded brooms

A poem cleansed of her passion

Now a whitewashed white mansion

Where I lived with all my books

Moral tales without their hooks

Then one day I went upstairs

On the scent of ancient pears

Stepped inside a hidden space

Saw a lady in her place

Sitting on the wood threshold

Between French doors carved with mold

The trellis behind her back

Weathered by old dreams intact

For here the past is present

A kept woman with a scent

Black hair wrapped tight in a bun

But loosed by the telltale sun

Alone in her soft red dress

Her lips balmed with watercress

A contrast in shade and light

Luminous with heaven’s night

Her profile a pensive pose

Compliments of love’s repose

Until she turns and faces me

Like I’m her glass menagerie

Stay here with my other toys

She intones with stately poise

And I shall turn your soft dream

Into one last wretched scream

Burn this comfy home you’ve made

Into dust you cannot spade

And so I flee from her stare

Nothing else for which I care

Horror guides my every move

From this place I must remove

What’s left of my old tired soul

And my heart a smoldered coal

When I reach the welcome door

And try to flee the waxed floor

I find the knob will not budge

My soul condemned by the judge

This whitewashed home a prison

Escape no more my vision

As I spend my endless time

Here in this perfected rhyme

Published by Michael Sean Erickson

I write, act, and produce films in Los Angeles. Everything else is conjecture.

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