Perl is not a shell script interpreter. Assuming this is a command line for a program you need to call, you need to make it a string, and actually execute it, either by system or by backticks(``) or qx. Plus, it needs a semicolon between statements.
You're missing a comma before "NODE_DOWN", and you have an odd number of quotation marks. (You could actually get rid of all the double-quotes in that line except for the ones around "NODE_DOWN", but you need the missing comma.)
Running the script without fixing those (and the line pointed to by bart) will just generate a bunch of syntax errors. Is that what you meant by "I cannot get this to work correctly"? Or did you make mistakes in posting your code, and the version you're actually running has some other problem(s)?