The Ghost Lovers of Springside Hall – A True Love Story

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Daylight had broken, and the dining room was now silent and glowing. Whatever had possessed the night air that filled the pink hued room, was now gone. Why was it was there to begin with? Was it desperation for the loss of love?

A long time has passed since the death of the old couple, that lived at Springside Hall for fifty years.

Mrs. Rayburn would play tango music daily on the old phonograph, and her husband would sit silently in the dining room bay window and smile. He could not dance, but some days he would come and take her hand and swirl her around the room.

Money was not in abundance, but they simply had each other.  Each summer day he used to pick her one single pink rose as she so dearly loved those rose bushes that grew wild near her guardian angel within the trees.

Years passed by too quickly for them, and he ended up dying in his beloved bay window. Old, fragile, and now alone, Mrs. Rayburn was sent to the Almonte Senior Centre, and the home they had so lovingly shared was sold.

When we bought the house the dining room had acquired a chill in the air and plugs popped out of their sockets for no apparent reason.

The old fine porcelain doll now stood silently on a shelf near the window.  Mysteriously her eyes exploded one day, never to gaze anymore.  Instead of getting her fixed, I insisted she remain with no eyes, and gave her the name Helen Keller. After all, there was really no one else to watch, and what she saw all those years should remain silent and pure.You see, I feel her eyes broke as he wanted his presence known, because he knew I continually worried for his restless soul.

Hoping to give the room some closure, a call to Mrs. Rayburn was placed hoping she would come to tea and reassure “him” that all was well. Five minutes before she called to say she was too ill to come, all the radios in the house went crazy. Almost as quickly as the white noise flooded the house the sound mysteriously changed to bizarre tango music.  The noise was deafening, when suddenly, all became silent and the phone rang. Mr. Rayburn knew the love of his life was  going to call, and I think he wanted me to tell her how much he loved her.

After she died many months later, he did not come every day anymore.  In fact, his visits were quite rare and unassuming. Yet, I still felt him from time to time, and sometimes sensed a gentle misty hand on my shoulder. It was almost like he wanted to dance. I figured he was hoping that he could find his beloved wife once again, and feel her soul in his heart. I knew they had not found each other until the other night.

The room was dark, and it was very late at night. The heat had driven me downstairs to get some water to quench my thirst. As I slipped quickly through the darkened dining room I saw them. The two ghostly lights were holding each other tight in the old bay window.  I could swear they were tango dancing in the shadows. I knew they were finally together and at peace as they were now finally one.

Loving tranquility had finally come to the dining room at Springside Hall and to this day it remains.

Words and Images by Linda Seccaspina 2012

Springside Hall– The Morphy House

77 Lake Ave East,

Carleton Place, Ontario

About lindaseccaspina

Linda Knight Seccaspina was born in Cowansville, Quebec about the same time as the wheel was invented and the first time she realized she could tell a tale was when she got caught passing her smutty stories around in Grade 7 at CHS by Mrs. Blinn. When Derek "Wheels" Wheeler from Degrassi Jr. High died in 2010, Linda wrote her own obituary. Some people said she should think about a career in writing obituaries. Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa from 1976-1996. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off she finally found her calling. Is it sex drugs and rock n' roll you might ask? No, it is history. Seeing that her very first boyfriend in Grade 5 (who she won a Twist contest with in the 60s) is the head of the Brome Misissiquoi Historical Society and also specializes in local history back in Quebec, she finds that quite funny. She writes every single day and is also a columnist for Hometown News and Screamin's Mamas. She is a volunteer for the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum, an admin for the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page, and a local guest speaker. She has been now labelled an historian by the locals which in her mind is wrong. You see she will never be like the iconic local Lanark County historian Howard Morton Brown, nor like famed local writer Mary Cook. She proudly calls herself The National Enquirer Historical writer of Lanark County, and that she can live with. Linda has been called the most stubborn woman in Lanark County, and has requested her ashes to be distributed in any Casino parking lot as close to any Wheel of Fortune machine as you can get. But since she wrote her obituary, most people assume she's already dead. Linda has published six books, "Menopausal Woman From the Corn," "Cowansville High Misremembered," "Naked Yoga, Twinkies and Celebrities," "Cancer Calls Collect," "The Tilted Kilt-Vintage Whispers of Carleton Place," and "Flashbacks of Little Miss Flash Cadilac." All are available at Amazon in paperback and Kindle. Linda's books are for sale on Amazon or at Wisteria · 62 Bridge Street · Carleton Place, Ottawa, Canada, and at the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum · 267 Edmund Street · Carleton Place, Ottawa, Canada--Appleton Museum-Mississippi Textile Mill and Mill Street Books and Heritage House Museum and The Artists Loft in Smith Falls.

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