Poetry ~ The Haunting of Hampton House

~

This week I am sharing a personal haunting as part of my October dark poetry series. This poem is based on my experience as a child living in my great-grandparent’s house in the low country of South Carolina.

My great-grandparents home on Hampton Street, Walterboro, S.C. ~ 1910
Spanish moss twists in the wind

hanging like the beard of father time

from the old oaks in front of the

house on Hampton Street

outside my bedroom window

a murder of crows scatter moon light

over dark weathered wooden floors

shadows dance around the room

as a malevolent wind blows

and sheer cotton curtains take flight

father time's laughter echoes in the distance

like clockwork at the midnight hour

the house wakes!

walls and floors expand and contract

doors open and slam shut

footsteps pace on the veranda

and run down the wide hall

reality distorts and displaces

as dark forms manifest and dissolve

through the wallpaper in my room

and so begins another night

of hauntings in the house

on Hampton Street 

Poetry ~ Shine

as a child born to the low country 
of South Carolina,

it was a well known fact
that the swelter of summer
caused women to glow,
men to sweat,
and a scant few
we’re said to shine

efforts to ward off
glowing, sweating, or
shining we’re met in earnest 

seasoning was discouraged 

retreat into the cold 
conditioned air
was remedy enough

the cure conjured
~ brain freeze

now, as an elder of the
northern highlands, 
in the dry heat of late summer, 

i prefer to season
and conjure up
my shine