The life-sized Raggedy Ann doll
had blurry hands, no fingers.
White oven mitts had been grafted onto her wrists.
Her knotty red mouth
held me transfixed. Her dirty yarn
began to twitch until she spilled out
of the rocking chair, sagged to the floor,
then straightened up and leapt
toward my bed. Slow motion ticking
clogged my head and my voice
was a hiss, the rustle of a finger-stained dress.
The dark space from the bottom of my dust ruffle
to the floor grew wider until I couldn't see
what was creeping up. Muffled
by a heaving pillow, cotton
pressed into my ears and when I turned
toward the rocking chair again--
it was me with my mouth sewn shut, my eyes glued
to bleeding digits, stiff-moving
new fingers on a rag doll dangling over the edge
of her tussled bed.
Room K at the Horror Hotel
In darkness, I awoke
to the sound of screaming.
I flicked on the light switch
and discovered that I was
covered in blood.
Someone was still screaming.
I pulled the insect larvae
from my ears and realized
it was me.
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