Something Is Up There

RDP Thursday: On The Roof

Karl Nordstrom

When I hear the old floorboards in the  hallways outside of my bedroom groan and pop, I know it’s just my house feeling it’s age.

When I feel a draft at night, creeping around my feet and sometimes touching the back of my neck light as a feather and sometimes giving me a little nip, like playful kittens and impish adult cats do, I know it’s cold because my windows are old and wobbly in their frames and they can’t keep the weather out like they should.

When the lights go off for no reason at all and stealthy distorted shadows suddenly appear on the walls around me, I know for a fact that they are there because the wiring in my house is older then me.

Not, however by a lot.

But when I hear that scratching, that clawing on my roof I know what it is, I know who it is and when I am not tired from a day of haunting my favorite bookstores and gardens  I ignore it and go to bed.

Though there are nights, when the scratching the clawing that stops when I turn down the radio and look up at the ceiling and the scratching and clawing is accompanied by  a string of words that for will turn into a tune and then weeping that I know I have to make it stop if I want any rest at all.

So I open the door and step out onto the porch and from above the scratching, the clawing the babbling come together and I can hear them race to the porch eves just above my head.

I step back and stand into the doorway and from the roof above Alberik Prat drops down halfway head first and hangs there and whispers and pleads for me to let him in for a little rest, for something to eat. Maybe a drink. He’ll be gone by daylight he says.

In the spiderweb covered porch light, Alberik Prat’s face is swollen and red. The skin across his forehead his dry and has fallen away in little patches exposing the smooth white bone underneath it. When he talks his teeth click and they sound like rats chewing and clawing in your walls at night.

” Go away.” I say ” there’s nothing for you to eat here. ”

” Please. ” he says, ” I am so cold and I just want a little rest. ”

When I don’t say  no right away he drops a little lower.

” You can’t come in. I won’t let you. Not after what you did to us. Go back to your grave and sleep with the worms- if they’ll have you. ”

Alberik wants to yell, he wants to gnash his teeth, he wants to scare me to death- but he can’t do that again.

” Vampires. ” I tell him. ” Belong in their graves. Not on porches begging for a bite. ”

” And ghosts ” Alberik hisses ” are full of themselves. ”

I close the door and I hear  Alberik scuttles across the roof and back into the darkness, where I suppose we both really belong.




The Good Days

My contribution to Linda G Hill’s One Liner Wednesday-

I’m 100% on board with today’s quote. I also think the artwork is stunning.

Anita Marie

Zdzisław Beksiński

“Tomorrow may be hell, but today was a good writing day, and on the good writing days nothing else matters.”
― Neil Gaiman

“Escape into reality” By Michal Trpak,Sculpture/Painting 2017

Chainsaws and Cherry Trees

Word of The Day Challenge: OPTIONAL


There is a tree in my Great Aunt’s yard

that looks like it’s suffers from  a wasting rotten disease.

Sometimes,  just before Spring the limbs turn gray, they crack, they crumble they fall to

the ground

and when you pick them up, they are mushy and smell like rotten eggs.


” Gads ” we  told her one Spring, ” chop that ugly thing down ” when her tree started to get sick.


” Why should I? ” she would said ” It’s a beautiful tree most of the time. It just has bad spells. I’m not going to chop it down because every once an awhile-”


” It smells like death and looks like a rotting corpse? ” My cousin, who was the only person in the family who had the nerve to be that blunt with her.


” And then what? ” she asked.


” We plant another tree. A better tree. Maybe a Cherry tree, or how about a plum tree? Fruit trees are lovely. What  kind of tree is this anyway? Do you even know? ”  my  Cousin grilled my Aunt.


My Grandfather said, ” It’s a mongrel. That’s what I think. It’s not any particular kind of tree. Unless that is, ‘ ugly pain in the ass ‘ is a kind of tree. ”


My Great Aunt, who was my Grandfather’s older sister snapped, ” You really shouldn’t go there Bertie.”


” Mother, ” my cousin said to my Aunt Ereni, ” we can do it right now. It’s not a very big tree and I can borrow a chainsaw from Mr. Crest next door. What do you say?”


My Aunt Ereni smoothed her graying red hair, looked at us pointedly  and she said, ” If I chopped down everything in this yard that went bad on me from time to time, this yard would be pretty damn ugly and  bare. Don’t you think? ”


That tree is still in her yard and it still goes bad from time to time. But now when it goes bad no one thinks about chainsaws or Cherry trees. What we think is that the yard would look pretty ugly and bare without it.