Swift’s Hollow (Gore Orphanage)
It is a cold October night and I am walking through the woods at the bottom of this valley, Swift’s Hollow. There is a strange noise, just beyond perception. A muted sound, as if heard from a million miles away. Is that the snap and crackle of a fire burning? Do I smell smoke? Are there screams of pain mixed in? The children locked into this cruel prison for no other reason than their parents have died are trying to get out. And now they are trapped, trying urgently to get out, to escape their grisly fate. Do you hear them?
Behind locked door
The valley glows red
An orphanage on fire
Apparition of the past
Visit the empty foundation
Souls lost in a conflagration
They speak to us as midnight approaches
Why visit this bloody spot of gore?
Why listen to the loud screams of pain?
Can you stand to hear babies cry?
A local right of passage
Communing with the dead
The poor children burnt
A local right of passage in my home town (Vermilion, OH) was going to Gore Orphanage at midnight. The legend was that the orphanage burned down, killing all of the children. The truth is that it burned long after the last child had left. It was a cruel place, and the horror visited on the children was remembered, but there was no mass death scene. There is also the old mansion in Swift’s Hollow that most think, wrongly, was the orphanage itself. The mansion was a strange place where the occult was practiced in secret. Perhaps the evil feeling really does come from it… I have written about this several times on the blog. (see here) As a kid I spent many, many hours exploring Swift’s Hollow. It was my favorite place in the world…
Written for Colleen’s Poetry challenge. Each week she gives us two keywords, only we must use synonyms only, not the words themselves. The words this week are “Ghost” and “Hollow“. This week I decided to attempt a Double Etheree. That being said, I added a paragraph and made it a Haibun