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That Monster Beneath the Bed

By Beth Cato in Issue Seven, November 2022

bedtime is the worst
mama off giggling and cooing
with her latest boyfriend

me sent to my room
ordered not to come out

the thing beneath my bed
oozes out and wants to talk
about stupid stuff like
what I learned at school
what I watched on TV
how I should do my hair

I tell it to shut up
and go away
'cause I'm not gonna
do up my hair all fancy
or wear frilly dresses
I'm gonna be me

the monster always whines
that it's ancient
it's been living in kids' rooms
for centuries
that it knows what's best

and I tell that oozing green thing
that it doesn't know nothing
being old doesn't make it smart
or right
it just makes it old

that usually shuts it up
so I can finally fall asleep

© 2022 Beth Cato

Beth Cato

Nebula Award-nominated Beth Cato is the author of A THOUSAND RECIPES FOR REVENGE from 47North (summer 2023) plus two fantasy series from Harper Voyager. She's a Hanford, California native transplanted to the Arizona desert, where she lives with her husband, son, and requisite cats. Follow her at BethCato.com and on Twitter at @BethCato.

Poetry by Beth Cato
  • That Monster Beneath the Bed