I watched the embers twist and flutter, falling to the floor
and wisps of smoke did curl and whisper underneath the door.
The window creaked and bowed and told a tale of heavy gale,
I sat enchanted by the shadows flicked into the faintly pale
imperfect light of candles filtered through some holy veil.
I juddered, groaned and muttered feeling flustered in the heat
which licked and lapped and fluttered round and grilled me in my seat.
The scratching rapping tapping of some branch upon the door
did rouse me from my slumber bring my feet back to the floor.
The tender saintly fragrance of another filled the air,
though delicate and faint it wafted quietly down the stair.
It tantalised my senses and I upped and turned my head.
What rattle of the branch at door and perfume from my bed?
I drifted cross the stony ground to bottom of the stair,
where mouth agasp I lost my breath for what I saw up there.
A flitting fleeting glimpse of ghostly maiden oh so fair,
‘fore round the corner floated swiftly maiden’s flowing hair.
Shocked I rolled and rocked and fell aback upon my heel,
I was not one to look to God but I cried for him with zeal.
And with that creaking of the window branches rapping at the door,
could that gentle tapping heard above be footsteps on the floor?
And that saintly scent grew stronger could I no longer ignore
its swirling swimming subtleties and fragrances so pure.
That sickly sweet aroma did infuse me ever deeper,
did drag me to the stair though they loomed over, never steeper.
With every step I took now I was feeling ever fainter,
my face now drained of blood was as pale and white as paper.
I peered into the mirror that stood halfway up the stair
and thought who is this man so alabaster standing there?
With final drop of strength I hauled my weight onto the landing
and caught sight of maiden’s spectral figure over standing.
That fair fine looking sultry ghostly figure there was standing.
Who looked at me with love and beauty patient understanding,
adorned in robe as white as pearl on corner of the landing.
And as I gasped and flapped and flopped and floundered on the floor
and branches kept their rapping and their tapping at the door,
my pale and saintly maiden did divorce me as before,
dissolving in the perfumed ether, leaving me in awe.
And as that holy light had faded, plunging into gloom
my weary acheing shaking body silent as a tomb,
And not the sound of wind or rain or banging at the door,
just stale and smoky room now dimly lit by coming dawn.
But soon the sun did percolate through the splinters in the walls;
Euphoric wave of radiance and beauty of the morn.
The light began to surge and pulse and fill the empty halls
and with this lustrous luminance I began to feel reborn.