Weekly feature by: Jennifer Lothrigel

The earth creeps
in the back door,
her ivy messengers strangling the walls.
Dead animals,
rats, squirrels, and sometimes hawks —
Angry bold words
spray painted across empty walls.
Old toys, limbless teddy bears and disheveled books,
no longer colorful or cared about
lie sun-faded on the floor.

The rat from behind the once-
flower papered wall
becomes the tenant who devours who own home.

The faded pink velvet chair,
still unloved, now deeply torn
has sprung undone.

Broken windows, open doors,
unhinged things.
The hollow space whispers cautionary notes.
Strange creatures could be hiding in spare bedrooms;
hiding beneath blue floral matresses;
inside mirrored closet doors.

I remember psychic bedtime stories
with guardian angels
that covered my eyes
when it was scary.

Let’s play marbles and crystal balls.
Let’s play Chinese Checkers with ghosts
and see who wins.

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