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Taking Leave of the Bogeyman

March 28th, 2021 by Michael Dyet

Hmmm, is there anything as futile as trying to outrun our shadow?

The five year old girl tugged on her mother’s sleeve to get her attention.

“Mommy, I’m scared.”

“Scared of what, Sweetie?”

“The Bogeyman.”

“Oh, there’s no such thing as the Bogeyman.”

“Yes, there is!”

“Let’s look under your bed and in your closet. You’ll see that there’s nothing there.”

“That’s not where the Bogeyman lives.”

“Where do you think he lives?”

“I think he lives in the TV and on your computer.”

“Why would you think that?”

“Because whenever you watch the TV or look at your computer, you have your upside down smile on. You used to smile all the time. But now it’s always upside down.”

“I’m sorry, Sweetie. I’ll try to smile more. It’s nothing you need to worry about.”

“But it’s why you wear that thing on your face when you leave the house, isn’t it? So the Bogeyman won’t know you’re you.”

“No, no. It’s just something we need to do for a little while until… Well, just for a little while.”

“Until you get the special medicine?”

“Yes, that’s right. And it won’t be long now.”

The child thought for a moment – her brow tightly furrowed as she puzzled and puzzled.

“Mommy, I think the Bogeyman lives in our shadow.”

“No. Our shadow is just what happens when the sun shines on us.”

“But it’s a dark thing that follows us always. I tried to run away from it, but I couldn’t. The Bogeyman can run as fast as I can.”

“No, it’s true. You can’t outrun your shadow. But it’s not the Bogeyman. The Bogeyman is just make believe.”

“I don’t believe you, Mommy.”

“Why not?”

“Because you’re still wearing the upside down smile on your face. I think you should stop watching the TV and stop looking at your computer. I think that’s the special medicine you need.”

The mother was caught off guard by this wise counsel. A smile came across her face.

“You may be right, Sweetie. You may be right.”

Now Available Online from Amazon, Chapters Indigo or Barnes & Noble: Hunting Muskie, Rites of Passage – Stories by Michael Robert Dyet

~ Michael Robert Dyet is also the author of Until the Deep Water Stills – An Internet-enhanced Novel which was a double winner in the Reader Views Literary Awards 2009. Visit Michael’s website at .

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