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Beware, When The Shadows Call

by Kelli Sheckler-Amsden 5 months ago in surreal poetry
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The Goblin's Will Get You, If You Don't Watch Out

Beware, When The Shadows Call
Photo by Dawn McDonald on Unsplash

The cabin in the woods had been abandoned for years,

but one night, a candle burned in the window.

Even after all these years, no one dare mention his name,

or how eerily that flame again, began to glow.


It wasn't the first time that candle was burned,

they paid a steep price to be rid of his games.

But when dealing with the devil, and the trading of some souls,

the lives you knew, well, will never be the same.

By Rishabh Dharmani on Unsplash

They constructed a wall to keep the cabin out of sight,

to stop him luring victims to his lair.

Disappearing bodies, leaving nothing but their screams,

some sleeping bags, tennis shoes and strands of hair.


But, like a scary story at a campfire late at night,

when dark cool, misty summer evenings arrive.

And the moon peeks through the clouds, like an eye up in the sky,

casting shadows, bringing it all back to life.

By Kenrick Mills on Unsplash

If you listen closely, you'll hear whispering in the dark

witness ghostlike visions, drifting in the light.

Leaves rustling in the trees, telling secrets that were kept,

as the wind gently calls out the name, "Dw-wight."


Now, Dwight once lived here in this town, in fact, up in that little cabin,

he was mean and vile, and full of ill intent.

He terrorized the neighborhood with his crazy games and magic,

until they did the deed that forever will torment.

By Joanna Kosinska on Unsplash

The scene was set, as they paid their debt,

but two wrongs rarely ever make a right.

They had no idea the kind of evil they invited,

until events that led up to that night.


Many heard him cry for help, though no -one even thought to check,

they made up their minds to no longer be his fool.

The screams went long into the night, he begged them, "help me please",

they had no sympathy for one who'd been so cruel.

By Anastasiia Tarasova on Unsplash

No one speaks about him or the day that he went missing.

In fact, there were new rules about games to play.

Nothing to scare or make nervous the few,

who remembered life before Dwight was betrayed.


Ring around the rosy hide and seek and kick the cans,

red rover, chicken, tag and truth or dare.

Games we played, to maintain the innocence of life,

oblivious to the monster lurking there.

By Neil Rosenstech on Unsplash

He appeared from out of nowhere, offering to bring us to his cabin,

with the promise to do things we'd not done before.

Little did we know exactly what he had in mind,

or the terrifying horror he had in store.


The days were filled with swimming, riding bikes and hanging out,

a picnic on the beach, down by the lake.

We played so many games, come dusk, when the campfire began to glow,

tucked in our sleeping bags, we could barely stay awake.

By Frank Holleman on Unsplash

He told us funny stories bout' some clowns and jumping beans,

two headed cows, weird things to make us grin.

Then, he told us how they killed him, and he'd come to make it right,

our laughter turned to screams, as the light lit up his chin!

By frank mckenna on Unsplash

Distorted shadows creeping, long across his face,

stirring fear we didn’t know we held inside.

Escaping our from our lungs, out into the midnight air,

we all shivered as he told us how he died.


A smile crossed his face as the laughter left his lips,

he said, “no one will answer when you scream“!

They will leave you as they left me, all alone, out in the dark,

to be devoured by the monsters in your dreams!

By MontyLov on Unsplash

He zipped and tied us tightly, so we couldn't move or shout,

he whispered something in a growl that haunts me still.

No matter where you go, I'll see you, of that please, don't ever doubt........


“And the goblins will get you, if you don’t watch out!!”


Thank you for your time in reading my twist on the campfire story.

The line at the end is borrowed gratefully from an 1885 poem written by James Whitcomb Riley. Read to us by my father, with a flashlight under his chin.

surreal poetry

About the author

Kelli Sheckler-Amsden

Telling stories my heart needs to tell <3 life is a journey, not a competition

If you like what you read, feel free to leave a tip, I would love some feedback

Find me on twitter @kelli7958958

or facebook

Reader insights


Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

Top insights

  1. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

  2. Easy to read and follow

    Well-structured & engaging content

  3. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

  1. Heartfelt and relatable

    The story invoked strong personal emotions

  2. On-point and relevant

    Writing reflected the title & theme

  3. Expert insights and opinions

    Arguments were carefully researched and presented

  4. Eye opening

    Niche topic & fresh perspectives

  5. Masterful proofreading

    Zero grammar & spelling mistakes

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Comments (12)

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  • Bowin Bittel2 months ago

    Great! I want to give you credit!

  • Great work Kelli! This poem was excellent; love how you decided to write a poem for the challenge. Thanks for sharing!

  • Tiffanie Dotson5 months ago

    Hello, I just read over your poem!!! I absolutely love this twist on the challenge. Very unique and originality idea. I also throughly enjoyed the poem itself. You did amazing! Congrats. Should you have the time, would you mind reviewing my story "Coldmyer's Tomb" it is also an entry in the contest. And I am eager for more feedback as I may decide to publish it in a short story collection in the future. Thank you and good luck in the contest!!! Warmest Regards, T. M. Dotson

  • Jack Evans 5 months ago

    Great post

  • Loved your take on the challenge. This was a fantastic story!

  • L.C. Schäfer5 months ago

    Very different, really stood out from other camp fire stories. Congrats on the top story!

  • Hassan5 months ago

    Oh I enjoyed reading this. Really a unique take on the campfire story. Excellent stuff!

  • Scott Wade5 months ago

    This is awesome Kelli! Great story, easy flow, great rhythm, and scary! A definite tale to read aloud around the campfire. Congrats!!!

  • Kemo Robson5 months ago

    Lovely... I'm a writer too and I love reading stuffs like this... hope my account gets set up soon, can't wait to share my own creepy stories too straight from Africa

  • Stephanie Downard5 months ago

    Creepiness at it's best! Loved that you did poem. Fantastic job! ❤️

  • Nikki Lee5 months ago

    This was a great take on a campfire story. It was so spooky and eerie. I also love your writing style.

  • This is an excellent take on the challenge, I loved it and it conveyed wonderful erriness

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