Behind The Couch

Michael Schnitter

Have you ever smelled something so subtle

You were unsure if it was there at all?

Some vague, distant, sickly-sweet stink caught only on the periphery

Taunting your senses of something truly wicked

But so soft and gossamer thin

That in a state of panic you sniff furiously to confirm its existence

A single whiff cascading into an environmental inquisition

To root out the source of the corruption

Tearing apart room after room expecting to find something rotten

Something ripened and bursting with putrescence

In hues of muted green and grey and bile yellow

Something matted and moist, screaming with acidic revulsion

Something dead

Your mind races, desperate to find it

But you can no longer smell it

You can not see it

Time passes and you find nothing

But the wreckage of your search lives on

Always at the edge of your mind you expect it

You smell it on occasion

Or perhaps it is just the anticipation and dread


It whispers to you

You can hear it, but the words are watery

And drip from your ears before you can grasp their meaning

The world darkens and contorts inwards

Pressing you ever closer to the waiting abyss

The hungering maw of insanity

As a thousand worries scurry across your thoughts

Like so many shuddering horrors cast forth from eternity

Biting like so many blackflies swarming in great clouds that blot out the sun

The buzz a deafening roar

Blind and deaf you struggle on ragged, and exhausted

Your eyes close as you give in to the beckoning hands of yawning midnight

An extend your hand to greet the soft arms of oblivion

And that’s when you feel it

Something hard and cold

A hollow scraping sounds echoes as you grasp it

A spoon

In an old yogurt cup

Behind the couch

Here In My City

Reading, PA | 484.668.1147

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Typewriter Image By Florian Klauer at Unsplash.