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all content © A.E.M. Baumann
– Mar. 19, 2014
This is an old bit that I dusted off and rewrote a touch to throw into an impromptu "contest" on the Weird Magazine facebook page. Nothing to be awarded except they'd pick the best ten and put them on their home site (here). Of course, laziness kicked in and they just threw a mass of the submissions onto the page – which is not in critique but humor.
The darkness hides in daylight, boy.
It hides in trees, where it can’t be got –
maybe gets a chance to push some kid;
maybe gets to laugh as they fall,
bounce here, bounce there, don’t bounce at all
when they hit the ground.
It hides in the sewers –
with the rats and the crawlers, the dolls’ heads and wretch,
with the torn clothes and the bloodied branches,
and the hungry souls of the street people
washed down with the winter muck;
down where the screaming can echo a good long time;
down in the warm wormstench
where the darkness births its children.
You listen when the oil pours heavy and musty
into the wide mouths of the gutters.
You listen and you’ll hear the moaning
of ghosts ripped from the inside
birthing their hideous offspring,
birthing things all bent and loping and hateful.
You listen, and you heed my words, boy.
The darkness hides but it don’t sleep.
And its children are always hungry.
You stay away from those sewers, boy.
Stay away from what they hide.
Those covers are heavy for a reason.