Tourist Trap

Tourist Trap

“Any gremlins hereabout?” a tiny woman queried,
inspecting piles of autumn leaves for any bodies buried.
I’d feared she was a tenderfoot when she had signed up
for this Halloween adventure, but I evilly quipped, “Yup.”
Every freckle popped out as her face blanched to pure white
and her muscles tensed up to prepare for fight or flight.
She surveyed every shadow on the path that led us up
to the haunted mansion where the group of us would sup.
The scene was dark and moonlit and the shadows all reached out.
A most effective scary atmosphere, without a doubt.
The spooky creaking of the door as we reached the house
was echoed by the squeaking of every resident mouse.
The furniture was draped with ghostly sheets covered with dust,
and every metal object wore a crumbling scab of rust.
Eerie portraits on the wall. Thick drapery that soon
we’d draw back so the diners could view a harvest moon
as they supped on boiling cauldrons of steaming witches’ stew
and rich red wine in lieu of blood would simply have to do.
What is it about Halloween that makes folks crave a scare
so much that they would pay us to bring them to this lair?
Mortals are so gullible, and now the time draws near
when they’ll become the spirits who’ll conduct the tour next year!


Prompts today are tenderfoot, scene, gremlin, hereabouts, freckle and furniture. The photo is of the Lord Crewe Arms in Scotland, an abbey built in the 12th century and later turned into a hotel. My mother and I slept in its haunted room overlooking the graveyard in 1985. If you want to hear what happened, go HERE.

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