Edgar seduced her with a cask of Pinot Grigio.
It was Mardi Gras time, so he hid behind his mask
and the black cape of his roquelaure. He praised
her costume and purchased her new ones,
glimmering with shiny baubles. She followed him
into the catacomb of his bedroom where the bones
of his past conquests lay in a pile. She smashed
the head off a flagon of Johnnie Walker
with a gesture he did not understand.
The next morning, she found herself chained
within a niche in the kitchen. Edgar walled her
in there with non-stick pots and pans.
Never complaining, she smiled out at him,
even as the last opening was closed up.
Thirty years later, he heard a scream.
He tore down the wall and freed her,
while an enormous black cat
screeched from the top of her head.
*This poem uses images from two Poe stories: "The Cask of Amontillado" and "The Black Cat."
Jimmy Pappas received an MA in English Literature from Rivier University. His poems have been published in such journals as Atticus Review, Kentucky Review, Poppy Road Review, and War, Literature and the Arts. He is a first prize winner of the Poetry Society of New Hampshire's National Contest.