once upon a time

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the doorway

not a poem


Set into a wall of blue stone granite, the doorway beckoned. It was
black, unrelenting black even on the sunniest day. We whispered together about the snarckel and how he lived in there and how he ate small childer.  We knew it was true. Our mothers and all the big boys told us ‘he'll get you', but still that black door beckoned telling us ‘you'll be okay come on through'.
‘Come on we're  playing hide and seek', that shout from Mickey.  One of my pals told us to scatter and hide. ‘Where will I hide? The entry?  Behind the bin?  Go through the doorway?  Ah no, the snarckel lives in there. He'd be worse than Mickey if he got me'.

All down those lifelong childhood days the black doorway, siren-like, called to us. We would dare one another ‘you go', ‘no, you go.' Of course none of us ever plucked up the courage to see what lay on the other side. The snarckel was too frightening. Oft times on my way home from school I'd think ‘go on; go in, he won't get you'. Then caution or fear would kick in and I couldn't take the chance - better safe than sorry I'd think.

How quickly time passes. Standing here dressed in my long trousers, big now, all grown up, thinking, ‘I'll go and see if the snarckel really lives in there'. Gathering courage, shrugging off all the childhood stories, slowly I approached the door.  Then, hand flat against the blackness, trembling, telling myself ‘there is no such thing as a snarckel, but, ah ha is there'. Pushing hard against the doorway of childhood dreads, it creaks and groans, slowly opens. My mind is telling me it will waken the snarckel, then is reassuring me ‘no such thing you're a big boy now'. Stepping through a glory of colour confuses me. How can this be?  

An elegant beauty denies the horror of the dreaded snarckel. Instead a wonderment of freedom from fear stretches before me. I gently touch a yellow rose, then a pink gladiola. I walk under an arbor covered in roses, realizing that life should be about beauty, not being frightened by the dreaded snarckel.    

 Glancing over my shoulder the black doorway has disappeared.  In its place instead is a yellow glow of sunburst. On this side of the black door all is golden.

Tentatively I move forwards, knowing I must explore and discover the secrets hiding in the snarckel's garden. Treading the numerous pathways
I slowly realize there was never a snarckel, simply a word created to keep small childers out and stop them running amok in the golden garden. Looking around the honeysuckle lures me towards its flower. Knowing I can suck the honey from its flower I brush the fuchsia. Suddenly I realize the garden is encased by the old granite bluestone.

Why hadn't I thought of that a long time ago? Too frightened of the snarckel I suppose. Pulling gently on the honeysuckle I uncover another doorway set into the wall. Bland and uncompromising it demands I go through. Turning the handle, the door swings gently open and then I realize I'm a big boy now. The snarckel of childhood has been left behind. Responsibility and adulthood are the true snarckel of life.

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the doorway