Copyright 2013. PATG LLC. All rights reserved.

Chapter 14

Strange Surroundings


Perlameen woke, warm and cozy

In soft linens, stitched with posies.

Full rose vases, bright red blooms,

Everywhere, everywhere, filled the room,

Surrounding wide, a canopy bed,

Where she lay groggy, foggy in head.

Open windows, let in light,

Of bluest sky, and sun shone bright.

A robe and slippers on a chair,

Lay near her clothes, too stained to wear.

“Oh where in the world could I be?”

Perlameen whispered, wonderingly.

Sitting up quick, she rose to see,

When one old woman, appeared with tea.

“Ah my dear, you’re awake I see.

About time I think! I’ll let you be.

I’ll tell the master you are up,

And he’ll invite you down to supp.”

Perla tried to loose her lips,

But the woman left, quick as a whip.

And when the door closed up its crack,

Her memories came flooding back.

She staggered to the balcony,

One hand on rail, one hand on knee,

And fought her breath, tight in her chest,

With racing mind, and heaving breasts,

Until sun’s warmth, calmed smooth her face,

And slowed her beating heart a pace.

She looked down long, and over rail,

Disbelieving, shocked and pale.

For far below, an open square,

Lay filled with people here and there,

Moving briskly, with purpose and bother,

Richly dressed from boot to collar,

Amid great buildings, huge in size,

With spires and flags, and the surprise,

Of happiness about the place,

On every chin and every face.

Then at the door a little rap,

Sharply knocked and rata-tapped.

And next a clicking, turning key,

Slit the lock, so door swung free.

The old maid entered with a dress,

Of beautiful blues, fresh cleaned and pressed,

“Dinner at 8” she calmly said,

And laid the ball gown on the bed.

“Please wear the gown. The closet I think,

Has a shawl of matching pink.”

“Wait!” said Perla, who desperately,

Now stepped inside to make a plea.

“What is this place?” she said arms spread,

Pointing to sky, to room, to bed.

“I don’t know how or why I’m here,

But this is all, too strange and queer.

I must go home, straight away,

To see my sister is o.k.”

“Your questions will be answered soon”

The old maid said, smiling faced-loon.

“The Master shall tell you everything,

Just come to eat, when sup bells ring”

Then she left, locking the lock,

Ignoring Perla, and slowly walked,

Away on shoes that clicked, like a clock.