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Wash Our Own Sandals

LaochSpioradMar 12, 2021, 4:58:21 PM

My love and I walked across the thresh hold,
Our new home was grand and built of fine woods.
There was nary a rat or spec of mold.

Even the banisters looked as they should,
No chipping of paint or dust on the rails,
All markings of time this building withstood. 

On every step I feared exposed nails.
A foolish concern sourced in memories
Of more broken places beyond the pale.

A smile escaped as I dropped to my knees.
My luggage cast beside the hand carved door
Sighing relief that I now live so free.

Not a penny owed to the bank anymore
This house was cheap even for the jobless.
Very good timing since I lost my store.

Emilia, my love, who knew my dreams best
explored every room with me smiling.
There was so much to see; so much to miss.

Three massive floors of quality styling.
Two bathrooms on each perfect for parties.
Even the closets had marble tiling. 

After an hour we saw all we could see
twenty bedrooms; a kitchen each story.
We sat in the parlor tired but relieved.

There would no longer be feeling sorry
for our situation in tiny homes.
Scrapping up money for rent and laundry.

Money I made from my store selling phones
with the sale of the business as well
should pay the bills for this new house I own.

It cost me less than a used car for sale.
Taxes, lower than ever imagined
It also had land that matched it in scale.

The first day was calm so we settled in
We sat by the fireplace and drank cider.
The couch we sat was late Victorian

Evening passed and the sky grew darker.
I dressed for bed and we chose a bedroom
The largest one with the fancy armoire.

Emilia should return to me soon
She had gone to the restroom to freshen
her hair with a comb and fragranced shampoo  

A scream broke out from the bathroom within
which my love went to prepare for the night.
I jumped up to check on the commotion.

To my surprise the scream did not stay right
in the master bathroom that it began.
It moved through the walls now covered in blights.

Mold seeped down with a smell of a rotten
Corpse that had sat in the summer sun.
Cobwebs blew from corners that had not been.
The scream moved further down the massive run
of molded walls and stained pictures of dead
men and women painted most artists would shun.

"I must save my wife", I thought in my head.
"She was carried away into the void".
What could I do but keep running ahead?

Thinking bad thoughts I could not avoid 
I almost forgot that the walls were changed.
The paintings flew by with beauty destroyed.

I came to a halt where the scream now stayed.
A massive black door with smears of dry blood.
I swear this is new, I must be deranged. 

I stood at the door with my courage like cud
chewed up by cattle in fields of dread.
From fear my honor was falling in mud.

The archway above portrayed dancing dead.
Their flesh removed leaving skeletons. 
Carved in stone and riddled with bone shard shreds.

The carved faces seemed to laugh as one
unified army of the damned from hell
They pointed downward thinking they had won. 

"You'll never stop me!" I began to yell.
I grasped the brass knob and pulled with full strength.
Almost immediately my heart fell.

The door creaked open and stole away my breath
Decomposed fingers slid out of the dark
longer than serpents nails split by deep breaks.

From an unseen face a raspy voice starts,
"This is not your home, leave this place at Once!"
A deep red glow starts to burn from strange marks.

Runes fill the air which I cannot confront.
My eyes locked in fear at the gatekeeper.
I say to him as I try to be blunt, 

"I have made this my home. It's mine reaper.
It is not I who should start to leave here.
Give me my wife. You must now return her!"

With a dusty chuckle the creature nears.
His face exposed to the light of the moon.
It is a sorrowful face dripping tears.

I had expected a corpse to look through
Instead a  face with a grin full of teeth.
A man i'd once known from my early youth.

He was not the same when he used to greet
me from the front of the grocery store.
He had been handsome but homeless you see.

He used to speak of other worlds before.
Places beyond man that we could not know.
 "I am the one who can go and explore...

These vast unseen worlds that you cannot go."
He would claim to all annoyed passersby.
All would dismiss him because of his clothes.

Now in this door his looks could kill a guy.
His hair whipped around and black with thick oil.
Sockets bruised and wrinkled around his eyes.

The skin that clung to his bloated face toiled
to not snap off with every mouth move.
He was pale and green like an egg that spoiled.

The teeth that hung out were jagged and crude.
Yellow with stains and sharpened like dog fangs;
Mouth now three times as wide as house cats grew.

Crying tears that next to his smile were strange
the man licked his lips to moisten for speech,
"You don't belong here. This world is all pain."

He tried to grab me. I was out of reach.
He wept and laughed simultaneously.
"Run from this house or your soul will be breached!"

He continued, "Do you understand me?
These are not my arms though they are attached!
This is not my smile! I can feel no glee!"

"This is not your home! It is just a cache
of souls who thought themselves more than others!
If you don't run, my body will attack"

Understanding why he did not bother
to match his falling tears to his big grin.
This prison for him wants it a brother. 

"Why take my wife? Like you, she did not sin!
This place takes those of arrogance you said!
That may be you but she has compassion!"

The man laughed again swiping at my head.
His body still stuck behind the stone frame.
He heaved his chest hard as though filled with led.

"Do you not see the huge flaw in your claim?
All people have burdens of temptation.
We all are identical. We're the same.

You act like she deserves retribution.
She is just as selfish as I once was.
She will be cursed with the same damnation.

Does she not eat food that could feed God's sons?
Does she drink water that could clench daughters?
She is selfish no matter what she does.

Think your wife is exception to slaughter?
You are no better. Can't hold a candle.
When we're all in Hell well all be fire fodder"

"You're wrong", I said as I grabbed the handle
of the door that kept me from my dear wife.
"We bare our crosses and wash our sandals

I may kick up dirt as I walk through life.
That doesn't mean I do it with evil. 
I am a flawed man who bleeds from a knife.

All I can do is fight my own devils.
Temptation is there for me to do wrong,
but evil and flawed aren't the same level."

I cast open the door feeling so strong
no longer afraid of what faced me there.
I accept destiny to move along.

I pushed past the man with his greasy hair
to the other side where I was amazed
to see something I couldn't seem to bare.

I was at the grocery store in May
long before I claimed the cheap old mansion
but there was something surely not the same.

I do not know my name or who I am.
All I know is that I am at the store.
I have a drive to tell people my claim.

I used to speak of other worlds before.
Places beyond man that we could not know.
 "I am the one who can go and explore...

These vast unseen worlds that you cannot go."
I would claim to all annoyed passersby.
All would dismiss me because of my clothes.