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Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 154

For this week’s prompt, write a spooky poem. Of course, I expect everyone to have a different meaning of spooky. Maybe it’s clowns or someone standing just outside of view. Maybe it’s a movie or the economy or public speaking.

Here’s my attempt:

“Halloween”

The mornings stay darker later;
the evenings get darker sooner;
and I know sooner or later
the trees will strip for the moon, her
eye facing the earth with its ghouls,
vampires, witches, and were-creatures
roaming the streets for treats as fools
think they’re children with fake features,
but the kids were taken away
until the sun returns the day.

*****

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*****

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173 thoughts on “Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 154

  1. taylor graham

    WHAT LIES JUST UNDERFOOT
    It [Bicton cottage, Devonshire] required 76,000 sheep-shanks to pave it….
    – Elihu Burritt, A Walk to Land’s End (1865)

    Scroll-fluted ivories intricately laid,
    a rustic palace paved with knees of sheep;
    perhaps the quaintest tiling yet displayed:
    scroll-fluted ivories intricately laid,
    four hundred to the foot-squared, arrayed
    as strange economies we humans keep –
    scroll-fluted ivories intricately laid,
    a rustic palace paved with knees of sheep.

  2. Juanita Lewison-Snyder

    monster blue
    by juanita lewison-snyder

    a local man
    in a small blue-collared town
    with an evil so vile and seductive
    that one sunday a month
    it would rain ice
    sapphire blue.

    “quiet, kept to himself mostly,”
    said all his bleu cheese neighbors,
    armed only with memories of a blue-streaked childhood
    and a corpse of a cat
    they’d all rather not recount
    out of fear, out of guilt
    this dark lantern,
    nightmare blue.

    no rhyme, no reason
    he just enjoyed romancing blue.
    it was cold, and calculating, and beautiful
    and took him back to a time when
    the fingers of dawn, mortar blue
    would suddenly appear at the window
    inching her way slowly & stealthily
    across a urine-stained floor,
    so as not to awaken his bluegill father
    from yet another drunken stupor,
    until she could reach through the keyhole
    and under the door of his locked prison staircase,
    filling his corner with light
    so bright, so indigo blue,
    a reminder he was no longer alone.
    how it soothed ….
    how she comforted ….

    he generally held court hostage, at the end of a shovel
    under a sea of monster blues, monster shadows,
    papery thin mother, rigamortis blue.
    he marveled at the many shades of blue his victims exhibited,
    meticulously comparing each ’gainst notes he’d carefully assembled
    in a steel blue binder for the past 12 inanimate years…
    — from cobalt to peacock blue for those by strangulation,
    — robin egg to slate blue to those by suffocation,
    — turquoise to marine blue for those by drowning,
    — navy to midnight blue for those by poisoning,
    — and a kind of blackish blue to those by electrocution.
    his favorite though by far were small children
    for they almost always turned
    the most innocent shade of periwinkle,
    this intellectual
    darkling.

    he detested red,
    for it made him nauseous, lightheaded, uptight;
    a painful reminder of the time his beloved cat
    lay suffering in the middle of the street,
    deprived of as much a blue ribbon life as he,
    and so he shied away from open bloodshed
    preferring instead his own quiet brand of
    bloodletting, without the gore.

    he lived in a little weathered blue house
    and told little wedgewood blue lies
    to hide the little blue jaundice tattoos
    of a quiet blue-deviled life;
    listening to the likes of Billie Holiday
    and Dizzy Gillespie,
    while blue jays squalor at his front door;

    this local man
    in a small blue-collared town
    with an evil so vile and seductive
    one sunday a month
    it would rain ice
    sapphire blue.

    © 2011 by Juanita Lewison-Snyder

  3. Mike Patrick

    SINGING ON MURKLE
    by Mike Patrick

    How did it begin?
    It didn’t begin—not with me,
    but I’ll tell you how it is
    ’cause you blokes got it all crooked.
    It started seven years ago this Halloween,
    but you coppers bloody well know that.
    You the ones caught the cases.

    From me home
    in that rusted-out tool shed on Murkle Drive,
    I heard this bloke,
    tippin’ down the sidewalk, he was.
    He had a bottle in his hand and he was singing.
    Singing on Murkle!

    Murkle ain’t no place for singing,
    and it bloody well ain’t no place for the gentry.
    Every boarded up, firebombed building
    holds a thug, and an addict nods in every stairway.
    Murkle is a place where possessing a shilling
    will buy a blade slicing through your throat.

    That’s the way it was supposed to go with this bloke.
    I snuck close, pulled me knife
    and waited, hid in a bush.
    ‘Fore he got to me,
    he upended like;
    lit on his back with a thump.
    He thrashed about for a sec,
    then I saw . . . something dragging him.
    A gray something, flickering in an’ out
    of the moonlight, moving fast.
    Me blood ran cold, I’m tellin’ you.
    It leaned over him for a second
    then vanished into the dark.

    The bloke lay on the sidewalk.
    There was a gurgle,
    he twitched,
    and he rolled into the gutter.

    I waited, oh I waited
    until I was sure that gray thing was gone.
    Then I snuck up and looked.
    He lay there with his throat ripped out.

    It was funny-like,
    them eyes was looking up at the ragged clouds
    crossin’ the face of the moon,
    but they was glazed over,
    they wasn’t seein’ nothin’.

    I glommed his watch, money and bottle,
    no use lettin’ em go to waste,
    and dumped his body between the twin bridges.

    Now you coppers got me
    with blood on my hands tonight,
    but I never carved that girl,
    nor any them others
    stretched over seven Halloweens.
    I just kept hidin’ in that same bush
    and let that thing do the work.

    I got that girl’s bracelet tonight,
    and I’ll do me time,
    but I’m tellin’ you,
    I’ll sleep better in the clink,
    than on Murkle Drive.
    I know that thing is still out there.

  4. Walt Wojtanik

    DEMENTED

    “His mind’s not right” my mother would say,
    and my father was apt to agree.
    “He keeps to himself too much in a way“,
    a strange little man there, you see.

    My father was apt to agree,
    that something inside his boy festered,
    a strange little man there, you see,
    who loves to keep darkly sequestered.

    That something inside their boy festered,
    certainly was not the issue,
    “Who loves to keep darkly sequestered?”
    mother asked as she reached for a tissue.

    Certainly, was not the issue
    that my mind worked in mysterious ways?
    Mother asked as she reached for a tissue,
    “Where does that boy go to these days?”

    Yes, my mind worked in mysterious ways
    But, deep in my thoughts there was action.
    Where does that boy go to these days,
    was a quest for some self-satisfaction.

    Deep in my thoughts there was action,
    my pen at a feverish pitch,
    This quest for some self satisfaction
    would placate my poetic itch.

    My pen at a feverish pitch
    to pen pantoum and other such poems,
    would placate my poetic itch,
    “If they read what I write, they would know them”

    To pen pantoum and other such poems, see?
    “His mind’s not right” they would say.
    If they read what I write, they would know me.
    I kept to myself too much in a way.

  5. Walt Wojtanik

    WHISTLING

    Whistling past the graveyard
    only darkness lurks within.
    Whistling past the graveyard,

    yet I hear those sounds again.
    The creaks of barren branches,
    only evil lurks within.

    Still, I take my chances
    I find the noise unnerving.
    The creaks of barren branches

    has left my tune unswerving,
    A frantic blow through nervous lips,
    I find the noise unnerving.

    Then suddenly the walkway dips,
    a shadow figure beckons.
    A frantic blow through nervous lips

    would save my soul, I reckon.
    Whistling past the graveyard,
    a shadow figure beckons.
    Whistling past the graveyard.

      1. Walt Wojtanik

        Michael, that is a little thing called a Terzanelle. It combines the Villanelle and the Terza Rima forms. 19 lines, 5 interlocking triplets/tercets, concluding Quatrain where the 1st and 3rd lines of first triplet appear as refrains. The middle line of each tercet is repeated as the last line of the succeeding tercet (except for the center line of the next-to-last stanza, it appears in the Quatrain) Scheme: ABA, bCB,cDC, dED, eFE, fAFA

  6. cstewart

    This is spooky enough……….

    Warning:
    (a far cry from Whitman’s/Emily’s America)

    This is it:
    The last, undeserved, benevolent call for the imminent-domained,
    The self-appointed, heads of some-kinda state-countries,
    Now, creeping all over the American-side-of-North America,
    Politicians;
    As little, red-blood suckin’ terminally-money-grabin’ thieves-with-intent,
    Maliciously, sittin’ flat out corrupted, in the body-bag congress/senate/corporations
    Pullin’up your knee-high, China-cashmere, black socks,
    And fast-stuffin’inthepeople’smoney.com.
    (Without the slightest remembrance of a conscience).

    And, nere’ do well pimp-daddy, crony suckin’
    “Don’t Shoot” (?) hidin’ in the sewer lashed
    To the last dying tidbit-standard of peasant-plucked wealth
    Past.
    The hold em’ and kill em’
    And,
    I’ve-come-back-to-haunt-you –
    Baby Papa Doc imitators.
    Finished…
    That’s it.

    Don’t fall asleep again.

  7. Benjamin Thomas

    I have been “spooked” by public speaking of every kind for the last 22 years of my life. I’ve frozen once in high school, twice in college which caused me to flunk out of Technical Report Writing two times and other times not worth mentioning here. So this poem, or whatever it is, is based upon my real life experience.

    A Knockout Speech

    Speaking was inevitable
    So was the sweaty palms
    Horrid anxiety and erratic bowels

    Knocking knees and countless pleas
    For an escape, a back door
    An eject button
    Anything

    This seemingly eternal moment of anticipation
    Spared not even a millisecond of torture
    Riddling my spine with a jagged fear
    Every nerve gripped and severed
    As they prepared for flight
    Only to be rendered useless
    Like a vacant puppet

    Mustering some feeble strength
    To stand……..
    against………..
    My worst enemy
    A fierce three hundred pound Ninja
    With the agility of Michael Jordan
    Quickness of Bruce Lee on steroids
    And as ugly as Jabba the hut

    As our eyes connected across the arena
    I couldn’t help but notice his nasty drool across the lower lip
    The fire in his eye, sweat across his brow
    Determination in his countenance
    And metallic teeth all were a testament
    To his desire to have me for Le petit dejeuner
    And something told me, this was not going to be
    Tea and crackers!

    But I must make a stand against this behemoth
    So opening my mouth was quite a sight to see
    As words were uttered
    Bricks and cinder blocks hit the ground
    With crushing force
    Shattering on impact
    Into shards across the floor

    Every word drew increasingly heavier
    Fifty pounds
    Two hundred pounds
    Five hundred pounds
    Until I could no longer spew
    Them out of my mouth

    Suddenly I choked
    My windpipe had been cut off
    No air could enter or escape

    Then I froze
    As usual

    Making for an unbearable scene
    One I would never forget, tried to forget
    But only haunted memories
    Of an old wounded soldier
    Left with the indelible scars across his body
    As twenty thousand eyes pierced through
    My armor and embedded themselves
    On my heart, forever burned, etched

    Someone please step on me and
    Sweep the remains under a rock
    There in good company with the worms

    Now Post Traumatic Stress is encumbering all circuits
    Someone please hit the delete button
    And erase all history

  8. taylor graham

    MISSING

    Deceptions of an autumn moon –
    I dreamed the old woman
    we didn’t find. Twining creeper,
    greenbrier. Trees with bare wrists,
    bark stretched brittle over bone.
    In all the woods, that bleak
    dead-twig night, she wasn’t.

    Where do the missing go?
    Does a Dragon Moon drink them
    so they leave no clue,
    disappearing as easy as a child
    from room to room and then
    to sleep? easy as landscape
    turns to water hurrying down.

    In dream, there’s a dead man
    behind every punky log.
    No need to believe in ghosts
    to know what’s haunted.
    I walk right past her.
    But she reaches out her leaf-
    fall fingers, takes my hand.

  9. barbara_y

    Scratches on the Roof

    Heat rises from the scattered cars.
    It is yesterday, some starwatching night between
    poodle skirts and love beads.  The war
    is cold, and movies are filled with aliens
    alienation, and radioactive ants.  
    This is not Hollywood, only a loop of dirt road 
    off a narrow county highway. No one goes there
    but fishermen; and couples giving hickeys, taking
    bases.

    The camera darts around, and swoops, glances
    off full breasts and vee necks with shadows, 
    kisses pouting red lips, and looks over at the bushes.
    Something.  Perhaps the camera will leave the steaming
    and look.

    It is today.
    The leaves have turned, but most are on the trees.
    The weather man has predicted rain, but the evening 
    has been strangely calm, and warm. Here and there
    there are couples in cars.  A truck is idling, 
    a little roughly, on a boat ramp, trailer
    in the water, headlights pointed up the trees.
    A boat waits, rocking very little.  
    Where’s the fisherman?  The camera stares 
    at the bushes.

    It is tomorrow.  Someone will consider a party,
    down by the river.  

  10. Michael Grove

    The Last Frontier

    Red eyes in the darkness.
    Shadows in the moonlight.
    Blood curdling screams.
    A loud bump in the night.

    Staring down the barrel
    of a robbers loaded gun.
    Chased by a grizzly bear
    that you cannot outrun.

    Drowning in an undertow
    while trying hard to swim,
    Parachute not opening while
    skydiving on a whim.

    What’s the point in fretting?
    Why should you live in fear?
    Bravely face your worries.
    This is not the last frontier.

    By Michael Grove

  11. Michael Grove

    I Can’t Imagine Anything

    I can’t imagine anything
    spooky.
    All fear has left me long ago.
    What would scare me now?
    I can’t imagine anything.
    Surely there must be
    something.
    I have thought about this
    all day and
    I can’t imagine anything.
    And so I roll
    with what will be.
    Destiny
    will forge it’s own path.
    I can’t imagine anything
    spooky or scary
    about that.
    I can’t imagine anything…
    Wait, that’s it.
    That would be spooky, if
    I can’t imagine anything.

    By Michael Grove

  12. Mike Bayles

    Shadows Cast

    Just out of the psych ward,
    a downtrodden friend
    follows me in silence.
    I invite him into a bar,
    and try to envision
    the person I once knew.
    Inside, he stares at me
    through his black-framed glasses
    while I speak.
    He looks like Abbey Hoffman,
    although the movement has passed,
    or like an image of Alan Ginsberg
    without a poem.
    I ask him about the breakdown
    when he descended into silence,
    and he says he was fighting
    a chorus of voices inside his head,
    while I wonder about a murmur of fear
    stirring inside me.
    I look at him again,
    an apparition of memories,
    while he lingers in shadows of his life.

  13. Mike Bayles

    Shadows Cast

    Just out of the psych ward,
    a downtrodden friend
    follows me in silence.
    I invite him into a bar,
    and try to envision
    the person I once knew.
    Inside, he stares at me
    through his black-frames glasses
    while I speak.
    He look like Abbey Hoffman,
    although the movement has passed,
    or like an image of Alan Ginsberg
    without a poem.
    I ask him about the breakdown
    when he descended into silence,
    and he says he was fighting
    a chorus of voices inside his head,
    while I wonder about a murmur of fear
    stirring inside me.
    I look at him again,
    an apparition of my memories,
    while he lingers in shadows of his life.

  14. Nancy Posey

    The Move

    They’d heard the tales whispered around town—
    why the house sat empty for so long—
    stories of deaths, of restless spirits,
    of sourceless lights, shadows glimpsed
    through vacant windows,
    but the rent was in their range
    and need overcame superstition.

    The ghosts—if there were ghosts—will head out
    when the cobwebs are gone, Mama reassured,
    and almost before their belongings
    were unloaded, she had her hair tied up in a scarf
    and had every free hand sweeping
    and scrubbing. She hung lanterns all around
    and the boys built a bright, roaring fire
    in short order.

    They should have slept soundly, exhausted
    by their efforts, helping Mama work
    to keep their nagging fears at bay.

    But once the last crawled weary
    into new-made beds, the sound of wind
    whistled through invisible chinks,
    though not a leaf stirred outside,
    and the in dying light of the hearth fire,
    each in turn saw shadows, unaccountable,
    heard footsteps, saw moonlight stream
    through curtains, pulled back by hands unseen.

    By daylight, Mama had them reloading the wagon,
    without a word from Papa,
    leaving the key in the door and heading back
    to a home no longer too small,
    affording such proximity every shadow,
    every sound came attached to a familiar name.

  15. PKP

    Last Night

    Fell asleep in tumbled sheets  my leg 
    Thrown over hers  post pleasured
    Spent 
    On the gentle soft
    skinned creature 
    Breathing rose petals
    and sweet sweat
    All whispered passion words
    curled above our heads into each other
    Bent
    Wake in gray weak light of dawn
    Bladder full alone desiccated and drawn life and urine
    into a cathetered  tube lying lined straight  in a tight sheeted morn
    Cannot feel no  less  fling 
    A leg, a tumble, vanished as a dream our rose petaled
    Sweet sweated impassioned thing
    Yet in the corner drifting just above the bed
    Everything, fingers intertwined , everything just last night,
    Just last night fifty years ago, we said 
      

      

  16. taylor graham

    MISSY AND THE DRAGONS

    What’s behind the door? she wanted
    to know. Nothing, they said.
    Why is it locked? It isn’t, just stuck
    shut. Door in the corner of her room.

    Black dragons lived in the bathtub-
    drain; at night they flew under
    her bedroom door and into
    her dreams. On dream-dark streets

    they chased her up trees. She grew
    swift at climbing trees – at asking
    what’s behind the door?
    Just stairs to the attic, they said.

    One brave night the door opened.
    The light-switch didn’t work.
    In the dark she climbed past her own
    ceiling. The attic’s breath was stale

    with family secrets. Missy held her
    nose, kept climbing to – another door.
    Tarpaper roof, a parapet, and stars!
    She’d never seen such bright

    wings. Angels? No choirs, only
    rivers of silence. Dragons? Dark
    oceans tiding. No questions, no ideas
    at all. Just space to fly. Where?

  17. Marianv

    In Praise of Dark Places

    The moon sails high tonight
    A shaft of silver so bright
    Shines like a halo around each cloud
    Turning the sky into an ancient artist’s
    Conception of Heaven – All we need
    Is angels flying around each star,

    Tonight the light
    From the sky above is so bright
    That roosters have emerged
    From the chicken coop
    And crowed as though
    They were greeting daybreak.

    I have slipped outside in my
    Nightgown and now I stand
    In the ruins of our summers’’
    Garden – brown leaves and
    Yellowed fruit beneath my feet.
    Soon creatures from the near-by
    Woods will come and feast.

    Wait! Now I hear the shrill cry
    Of a woman in distress and for
    A moment, fear – what am I doing
    Out this late, not even dressed?
    But as the cry repeats I recognize
    The screech owl’s call (So aptly
    Named) and bathed in light from
    Our heavenly moon – no I will not
    Leave the party quite so soon.

  18. Walt Wojtanik

    THUMBS UP!

    Henri remembered his mother’s admission.
    “You do not have my permission
    to suck your thumb! If I come
    in again, my son, I will
    wield knife to lop off your thumb.

    Henri really was non-plussed,
    for no matter how she cursed
    and cussed; throughout her rant
    and ballyhoo his mother
    never followed through.

    Why, he could bet his whole right hand
    his mother would not take a stand.
    She did not know, she did not see
    Henri’s thumb was delicacy.
    So his thumb went back to get all wet.

    “YOU LITTLE BASTARD” came Mother’s yell
    “Did your ears not hear me tell
    the consequence of doing that?”
    “Let’s see that thumb, you little brat!”
    Down came her cleaver, and that was that.

    Henri stared incredulous,
    his mother’s deed, ridiculous!
    She took up the digit to put away,
    to return to Henri on the day
    that he agreed to cease his sucking.

    Henri’s wound took time to heal,
    and his nine fingers made him feel
    very much the lesser man
    who could not count as high as ten.
    He cursed the day his mother maimed him.

    He grew older, a handsome man
    With dark moustache and his hand
    encased in leather to hide the void
    where once his thumb had perched there sweet,
    his moist and tasty, handy treat.

    His mother, a woman of her word,
    did rue the day she got absurd
    by cutting off her baby’s thumb.
    She knew someday that day would come
    and Henri dear would have his thumb.

    The day arrived, but her surprise
    was something that disturbed her eyes.
    Henri’s thumb was mortified.
    No sign of life, she sadly cried.
    Her young man’s anger boiled within.

    Henri ranted. Henri raved.
    Henri cursed the day she saved
    the purloined digit in a baggy,
    for now the skin was black and saggy.
    Henri grasped his mother’s hand

    and reaching for the very cleaver,
    brought down the chopper soon to leave her
    quite left-handed; marked for life
    and underhanded. What he did next was hideous
    for in his hand, he held her hand.

    and hand-in-hand this messed up man,
    raised her paw triumphantly,
    making sure that she would see
    what her Henri had in store;
    her bloody stump dripped on the floor.

    He closed her fingers to a fist,
    with thumb aloft, which was the gist
    of all this time that he had waited.
    Now this day was celebrated.
    His mother knew this day would come,

    and watched in horror as her thumb
    was inching closer to his mouth.
    She prayed to God he’d keep it out.
    But Madman Henri had other plans
    again ignoring her commands.

    Henri sucked his mother’s thumb,
    she cringed, disgusted by her son.
    Henri soothed his hunger’s itch,
    for payback was a mouthy bitch.
    His mother knew this day would come.

  19. Shannon Lockard

    Without You

    Bare branches scratch
    windows.
    A dog howls,
    (I hope it’s a dog).
    Winds whisper
    and whistle.
    The black sky is
    gray, covered by clouds
    casting shadows
    in every corner
    Illuminating the emptiness
    of our house
    without you.

  20. barbara_y

    Reality is Creepy

    There are men in hazmat suits
    crawling across my walls, chipping, chipping
    chipping and knocking. In their purple respirators
    they resemble nothing natural,
    thought they swarm like paper wasps whose wings
    some evil child picked off to paste on a wooden box.

  21. Willy

    CATHARSIS

    From the depths of my acidic
    soul comes a spasm, surging up;
    growing larger, wider in its
    ascent through the physical shell
    into psyche’s place to shatter
    all dreams, hopes for long-absent peace.
    There are no more nails to bite, clothes
    to rend nor sounds to bellow in
    this isolated space shared with
    no one, ever. Not one voice will
    speak out; there are none to hear such
    silence. Let the welling recede,
    palpitate within its dark space,
    to belch forth unexpectedly.
    Observe. Take notes as I spit in
    the faces of my tormentors.

  22. Tracy Davidson

    The Awakening

    I wake from a deep sleep
    and find myself enclosed in a wooden box.

    My God, I’ve been buried alive!

    No, that can’t be right,
    I vaguely remember dying.

    I run icy fingers over my frozen face.
    Strange – my forehead seems more pronounced
    with deep furrows, the eyebrows thicker.

    My jaw feels fuller, as though
    I’ve suddenly grown extra teeth.
    I explore my mouth with my tongue
    and cry out when I cut it on something sharp.
    A strong metallic scent hits my nostrils
    and I breathe it in deeply.

    Blood trickles down the back of my throat.
    It tastes good. Rich. I like it.

    I remember now exactly how I died,
    the woman’s mouth approaching my neck,
    the pain followed by a blissful numbness,
    she urging me to bite her in return.

    I am a vampire. I who never believed
    in such creatures, who dismissed the whispers
    that evil was taking over the town.

    But I don’t want to kill people!
    I don’t want to drink their blood!

    Or do I? There’s a hunger growing
    in the pit of my stomach.
    I can’t get the image of her long
    white neck out of my mind.

    Oh, I’m not talking about the vampire
    who turned me into one of her own.
    No, my lovely wife – my widow I should say.
    I want to taste her in ways
    I’ve never tasted her before.
    And then I will tear her still beating
    unfaithful heart from her body.

    It’s time to leave this coffin.
    I fight my way through box and earth.

    Hold on my dear, I’m coming home.

  23. Walt Wojtanik

    NOT SO SWEET SUCCESS – REDUX

    Fragrances waft, a gentle meander, floral or woodsy in nature. It soothes the nose and masks unsavory things. But stench stumbles in like an inebriate drunkard who had soiled himself and his reputation; a sad mutation of the upstanding bastard he once claimed to be. Sullied was the air when the seal had been broken. No words were spoken with hands clamped across nasal passages and the message purveyed was one they had seen on more occasions then they cared to account. The numbers mount while teams sans smiles and enthusiasm teem in. Within the home left abandoned and presumed vacant when the owner, Mrs. Beedle was lowered to her rest. The best attempts to contact any family proved to be a futile exercise.

    A wise man would have considered the case closed, but their noses were reticent to relinquish the odiferous lingering. Gloved hands carefully fingering along the blood stained walls. The silence was interrupted by the calls from the group investigating the back rooms of this devoid domicile. Confident men and women strode toward the sounds, but found themselves reeling in disgust and horror. They were unprepared. Seasoned veterans stood and stared at the heap of former humanity foisted into the plush rocking chair.

    There sat the problem. The decayed remains of a woman slumped clumsily into the furniture. The lavender tatter that was draped across her shoulder disintegrated into powdery residue. The scent was a clue. There was a hint of bouquet the closer the Detectives came to the undone body. Hard and callus men were starting To lose composure. The closure sought for this decrepit soul seemed a long time coming.

    And then, the humming.

    An almost cheerful tune from the direction of the cellar door. What’s more, the accompanying footsteps
    fell in syncopation on the creaky boards. Guns drawn and a warning shouted. “Come out with your hands showing!” the cliché came. Another unnamed face peeked through to grace the room. A mid-age gentleman, fifty-ish, stepped forward from the doorway. “Aunt Ginny? You have visitors?” he creepily questioned the lifeless chair dweller. The man from the cellar, hands raised; a surrender unsure, came to stand next to the shell of the woman. His Aunt Ginny. Genevieve Beedle.

    “How rude, Auntie”, he leered, “You didn’t offer your guests a spot of tea? Allow me.” Soiled hands clutched for the knob on the old stove, amidst protests and commands to desist. Erwin Beedle couldn’t resist being the “congenial” host. At most, he wasn’t going down alone. The range did not ignite as such. It was much more like an explosion.

    New teams were dispatched to investigate the scene. The first thing they noticed was the smell.
    Fragrances waft, a gentle meander floral or woodsy in nature. It soothes the nose and masks unsavory things. But stench of dead and burnt flesh stumbles in like a demented and feeble minded “caregiver”.
    The surviving officers shiver when the subject is breeched. Erwin finally reached his pinnacle, of course.
    The cynical brute took half the force with him.

    **It bugged the hell out of me…sorry for the re-post!

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