Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette

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Poem: "Puddle of Darkness, Trickle of Light"

This poem is spillover from the April 21, 2020 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] janetmiles and rix_scaedu. It also fills the "Puddle" square in my 4-1-20 card for the Spring Fest Bingo. This poem belongs to the series Monster House and directly follows "Lurking."

"Puddle of Darkness, Trickle of Light"

I'm coming downstairs
for a midnight snack
when I hear them.

"This is really
a good household?"
says a voice that
sounds like dry leaves.

"It really is good,"
says the bogeyman.

"I don't mean to be
ungrateful. It's just ...
some places seem okay,
but turn out not to be,"
says the lurking shadow.

"You're safe here,"
comes the reply.

Who knew that
the bogeyman could
be reassuring?

"Safe. I like
the sound of that."

Tiptoeing a little closer,
I see them in the kitchen:
the lurking shadow
under the table like
puddle of darkness,
the bogeyman leaning
against the wall like
a trickle of light.

They're touching,
just at the edges, like
friends holding hands
for contact comfort.

"You might as well
come on in, we're
already awake,"
the bogeyman says.

"Sorry, I didn't mean
to interrupt," I say.
"I just got hungry."

The bogeyman shows
his selachian teeth.
"Me too," he says.

I make a plate of
peanut butter toast
topped with bananas,
passing a slice to
the bogeyman
out of habit.

Then I turn to
the lurking shadow.
"Do you want some too?"

A puddle of darkness
absorbs the burned slice.
"Thank you," says the voice
with its hiss of dry leaves.

"Any time," I say, and
head back upstairs.

Behind me I hear
the lurking shadow say,
"Okay. You were right."
Tags: community, cyberfunded creativity, family skills, fantasy, fishbowl, poem, poetry, reading, weblit, writing
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