The pocket of innocence in a person’s life,

When creepy crawlies and slimy, slurpy slugs

Lurk in the depths of dark

Beneath the bed,

And unimaginable horrors capture

Impressionable minds.

My tale begins

Before the flickering aura of the TV.

My innocent eyes

Drink in the confusing scenes before me.

A figure looms,

And my eyes hide themselves

Behind the soft, pink flesh of children’s fingers,

Yet still peeping through curiously.

His voice penetrates my very soul,

Filling me with fear,

The noises like blatant war cries

Of half-human warriors.

Slowly blackness steals away the light of day,

And quivering with nerves,

I troop, a frightened soldier,

To the confines of my bedroom.

The door is left ajar,

And whispers of well-wishing drift me off to the velvet fold of sleep,

To a parallel world

That I can’t control.

It begins.

There is no way to escape it,

The next episode in a long-running series,

The next chapter in a never-ending book.

A rush of colour fills

My midnight vision.

He’s there again.

Invading every second

Of my conscious and unconscious life.

I can hear him approaching,

His deep snorts,

Loud as sirens in my black, silent garden.


A sensation of panic,

Striking my dream’s self.

Panic-stricken, I flee from my own brain’s creation,

As a gentle click announces his arrival at the back door.

Coldness fills me,

And though I try to run,

My horror restricts me,

And the monster causes a fear-filled sleep.

In the morning,

When the last shreds of nightmare

Have faded away,

Remnants of the ghoul remain,

Painting his picture

On all that I rest eyes upon.

That building, an effigy of his fright-inducing face,

That cloud, his laughing, evil eyes,

That tree,

A prickly reminder of his garish features.

Yet irresistibly I am drawn, every weekend,

To the haunting cartoon creature

Of my impressionable childhood.

Emma H, age ?


This poem may require some modicum of explanation… When I was very young, perhaps about 3 or 4 years old, I used to have recurring nightmares in which I was terrorised by Bully, the mascot of the classic British darts-based gameshow, Bullseye. Despite these nightmares, I would still watch and enjoy the show every week, but he was an enduring and frightening figure in my dreams, who would bully myself and my family. My subconscious fears then manifested in real life, as I became convinced that I could see his face hidden in the tree in my back garden. The bizarre thing is that, even now, seeing his cartoon image still gives me the heebie-jeebies.

I wrote this poem at some point in my mid-teens, but I rediscovered it and typed it up unedited when I was 22.

Did anyone else have strange fears or nightmares that plagued them in their younger years? I’d love to hear about them!

Picture taken from Logopedia.

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