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Mar 2013
The sound of conversation from another room
   muffled soft by walls and doors.
   of comfort and security,
Childhood memories of my mother and father
Up late with dear friends
as indiscernible words and conversation and laughter became
a comforting lullaby
For I was down the hall in bed with my cowboy sheets and brown blanket  
Their voices, a mighty oath of safety and protection
against the monsters that hide at night in the closets and dark corners of children's rooms
Children who get to make believe their monsters
I got to make believe my monsters
And they were no match for my fathers laughter or my mothers offer for more coffee.

And I think of you out there
Who did not make believe your monsters.
For whom the voices reaching bedtime ears were coarse and menacing, angry and cursing,
  And sounds that children should not hear
unfamiliar words, but their meaning unmistakable.
Mothers crying and fathers yelling, strange men threatening
At tender age, the familiar smell of alcohol  portending danger
You need not make believe your monster
For the roaring, and snarling, all too real
     was just outside your bedroom.
     having consumed  mommy and daddy already, it was coming for you
And perhaps, still does
Russell William Johnson
Written by
Russell William Johnson  58/M/Colorado
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