Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Oh, brother (part 49) by Grant Harbison

Mistress Paine lay in her cell and heard a key in the door
The guard walked in with a bowl of gruel and threw it on the floor
“The floor be fitting for a whore,” he said and began to roar.
And continued to laugh as he locked the door
She crawled to the food and scooped it from the ground
Voraciously scoffed it like a famished hound
The measly portion failed to satisfy
And she lay on the floor and began to cry
“Oh, Blaine. How long still before I see you again? I cannot bear being locked in this cell. My life has become a living hell.”
She heard the jangle of keys and stared in alarm
Fearing he’d returned to do her harm
She grabbed her blanket and nervously gnawed
With mounting terror of being beaten and pawed
She stared in disbelief when she saw Maude the bawd
And a tall dark stranger she introduced as Claude
“It’s Claude you should applaud,” said Maude. “Never shall you have to worry again, for thanks to Claude the guard has been slain. Now you are free to look for Blaine.”  
“Madam Maude and Claude, I don’t know what to say. Such kindness I can never repay.”
“Rejoice in your emancipation,” said Maude. “You would have done the same for me without hesitation.”
“Maude, we must be on our way,” said Claude. “Very soon night will become day.”
“Oh, Maude. If only I knew where to look for Blaine,” said Mistress Paine as they started to leave.”
“On his way north, I believe.”
“You know this for sure?”
“Straight from the mouth of the hag in the wood and certainly not obscure.” 

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