An Avalon Ghost Story

After having visited Catalina Island and learning about some of the pirate lore of the island, I was inspired.

Off the great golden coast
stretching twenty-two miles,
lies an island with history to boast.
On its easterly side the land smiles,
for it hides an old Avalon ghost.

One day I did so come
to the Avalon Isle,
to write pirate tales and drink dark rum.
The barman heard my quest and did smile,
He knew an old man that would know some.

At last I found the man
who laid faint on a cot.
I told him my aim and my game plan.
He looked weak and his eyes were bloodshot.
He had me sit, and then he began.

“T’s a dying man’s tale.
of a treasure of gold.
Mark my words,” what he said, growing pale.
“My memory is sound, though I be old.
Listen well, for the loot’s of great scale.”

Bending low I came near,
as his voice spoke so low.
“Please tell me old man and do speak clear.
For this tale I am intent to know.”
His death was eminent, I did fear.

He began. “Long ago
was a knave of the sea,
a mean pirate named Captain Rouseau.
He stole what he could, then he would flee
to a secret place, only I know.

“It’s not easy to find
For it’s in a deep cave
I hope you are strong and of good mind,
For if caught at high tide it’s your grave
But if low, then your pockets be lined.

“The cave once was higher
and then, was filled with sand,
made dragging his chest a task drier.
The first mission of what he had planned
was to hide what he did acquire.

“His plan was to ignite
at the cave near its front,
one well-placed stick of fresh dynamite.
Standing bold, he did grin at his stunt,
for hiding his loot while he took flight.

“With a match lit the fuse,
and then ran for his craft.
But one misstep then halted his cruise.
His peg leg caught in a rocky shaft.
There, his life was repaid with back dues.

“Now it happened that day
that it was me who watched
when the pirate ship entered the bay.
Saw the chest go in and the task botched.
And to check, I rushed there right away.

“But when I arrived there,
only rubble was left,
the blade of a sword in the sun’s glare,
and one shiny coin, proof of the theft.
What could I do? I took up the pair.

“But each time that I tried
to remove any stones,
while in search of more coins, the ghost cried.
And then I’d hear the rattle of bones,
for the pirate’s soul had never died.

“As the years went on by
And I came of old age,
the secret stayed, for I did comply.
Though pirate’s screams are still heard with rage.
anytime man or boat does draw nigh.”

Now complete, he turned pale.
The old man closed his eyes.
“Where is the place? I still need detail.”
But the man had passed and so the prize.
Only these words can still tell the tale.