In the middle of the night,
I awakened in my bed,
To a tiny rapping sound,
At my side and overhead.
I lay quite still and listened,
Such persistent little taps,
I wondered as I lay there,
Should I answer those taps back.
But I stayed there, as if frozen,
Too scared to move around,
My room grew quiet as a tomb,
I heard no further sound.
I closed my eyes and grit my teeth,
And lay there, as in wait,
Sure enough, before I dozed off,
The taps did replicate.
And as the taps began again,
Once more I felt distressed,
Who or what was in my wall?
Were those raps an S. O. S?
In fear, I sprang up to my feet,
Oh dear, what should be done?
I grabbed my bedside telephone,
And dialed Nine - One - One.
But, as I called, the tapping ceased,
I listened more intently,
I put the phone back in its place,
Quietly and gently.
To not disturb the ambience,
I moved about on tiptoe,
Not another call came from my wall,
No need for my bravado.
The next night when I went to bed,
I geared myself for tapping,
And I listened all night through,
But there was no further rapping.
In the morning, a hint of smell,
Unpleasant and distasteful,
Whence its source, I could not tell,
But I did not want a plateful.
By afternoon, the smell had grown,
Was stronger and more pungent,
I had to open vents and doors,
The need for air was urgent.
I sniffed out the house, as best I could,
And, from some place within my wall,
A foul smell did emanate,
And was pervasive overall.
Nine - One - One offered me no help,
Nor the Fire Department, or Police,
What a dilemma - what a pickle!
How to make this bad smell cease?
I called my neighbors for advice,
There was little they could say,
Try perfume or cologne,
Or deodorizer spray.
I tried all that, but what they did,
Was just disguise the smell,
Which by now was even stronger,
And really smelled like - well?
The Board of Health got wind of this,
They tried to close my house,
They said something must have died inside,
A possum or a mouse.
Exterminators were too busy,
They could not come at all,
It seemed nobody cared,
About the dead thing in my wall.
I shook my fist, "Oh dead thing,
Why did you hide inside?
You could have just as easily,
Gone outside and died!"
My last resort - a carpenter,
Whose name, he said, was George.
He carefully, methodically,
Began removing boards.
George made great, gawking holes,
Within my walls of plaster,
Which did not solve the problem,
Just made the smell spread faster.
Next George attacked the ceilings,
And the attic overhead,
He poked and probed, look high and low,
And still found nothing dead.
One by one, my shingles went,
My whole roof disappeared,
When my walls did go, like Jericho,
George, too, got out of here.
No roof - no walls - no house - no George,
Just an odor in the air,
A hurtful, cruel reminder,
That something once was there.
I stood and gazed upon my space,
With tears, I looked around,
Not one shred of evidence,
As to what had died upon my ground.
Now, the moral to my story,
(And I hope that this sinks in),
Is pay attention to night noises,
And seek out their origin.
If there comes a tapping in your wall,
Get up and instantly tap back,
The unknown thing within there then,
May pursue a different tack.
It may return from whence it came,
Or leave by another route,
In any event, it may be scared,
And be very apt to scoot.
You don't want to lose your house or home,
Or be driven from your flat,
So my advice to you is this,
Go out and get a CAT!
Virginia (Ginny) Ellis
Copyright 2001

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