The Midnight Society (A Poem)

By Joyce Jacobo

[Author’s Note: Does anyone else remember Are you Afraid of the Dark? It was a show that aired on Nickelodeon around the 90s, where this group of teenagers would tell each other spooky tales in the forest at night.]

Many years ago…                 deep in the forest…

     a group of teenagers gathered after school

                      late in the evening

                           once a week

                     within the same glen

There                       they greeted each other

                 took seats upon stones

                            organized

         into a circle                 around a firepit       

                     and spurred into life                       

                           the fire that

                          cast shadows    

                               among

                           their revelries

Then                       one of the teenagers

        would reach into a bag

            fling its sandy contents on the blaze

                  and sing out the title

                           for a story

                                 she or he

                                    had to share

Spooky stories…

      sometimes with pleasant twists at the end

             but sometimes just the opposite

From cold spirits in search of warmth…

      structures prowled by ancient creatures…

                time travel to correct past misdeeds…

                        typewriters able to conjure dreams…

                                     and even frightful carnivals…

However           the longer those teenagers

                exchanged stories

         the more those exact stories

                   revealed about them

                          developed

                          one week

                              at a

                             time

As characters…                      in episodes…

     stories…               lost among stories…

                   forever

                 in that glen

           often nameless

                when remembered later by others

       their retreat sheltered

            amid a much greater darkness

                   which they struck back against

                         through narratives

                               to make them unafraid

11 thoughts on “The Midnight Society (A Poem)

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