Counting to Ten

tries to sleep
hoping not to wake
before bars close and
footsteps find the hall

stale booze and cigarettes
paint the wall like
hushed mouth secrets
taken to family graves

doors squeak shut
she counts to ten

knick- knack- paddy- whack

says her ABCs
over and over
clutching her doll
like lost children playing
in someone else’s


14 Responses to Counting to Ten

  1. nochipa says:


    Wow is all I can say. The ending line is a killer.


  2. johemmant says:

    This made me shudder, which isn’t a bad thing. Very powerful, hard-hitting.

  3. Sure. Just creep me out before I’ve finished my first cup of coffee. Thanks, Scot.

  4. Paul says:

    The power of implication. Simple like a childs eye view and threatening with just a touch of sound.

  5. Scot says:

    Thanks Nochipa–loved your new poem

  6. Scot says:

    something different–something needed to be said

  7. Scot says:

    not what anyone needs before coffee

  8. Scot says:

    thanks paul–may be the sound of silence

  9. enigma says:

    Gosh, that was powerful, and it was really disturbing, you have a real gift for making my hair stand on end.

  10. Paul says:

    i like that squeak of the door, its got a spooky resonance that fits the poem,

  11. Scot says:

    Thanks Enigma for stopping in

    Paul–thanks for the second read!

  12. JO says:

    Wow! You got it–the sounds, the blank fear filled with abc’s, the electrical bolt. Excellent poem.

  13. Scot says:

    Thanks Jo–not an easy subject to write about either

  14. nectarfizz says:

    This touches me deeply. Thank you for writing this. It’s very, very good.

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