Here Be Monsters

Cayt Mirra

There are monsters under the bed.

Ones we fear, ignore, pretend aren’t there.

 

There are monsters in the minds of men

who hold the guns and push the buttons

and sign the papers.

 

There are orange monsters with tiny

hands who grab women by the pussy and

lock up children.

 

There are monsters who think that if they

tell us seeking asylum is illegal we will

believe them.

And we do.

 

Under the bed are more monsters made

from toxic waste

that eat and choke and smother the

whole world piece by piece.

 

There are monsters who rape women in

parks and then

even more monsters

with vicious claws

tapping away

asking what she was doing there

what she was wearing

why she didn’t do

more.

 

And what of the pink and blue monsters

that hide beneath the beds of children

whispering to them the things that they

ought to be? What of them?

The monsters that we hold

so tight to our chest

and say are important. Part of tradition.

 

There are monsters hiding in the mirror

who look like

you.

These are the hardest to fight because

they aren’t really there.

Monsters with fangs that bite.

 

There are monsters who work together

to protect themselves.

Monsters who hurt children

and spread hate

and make money

and tell lies

and call this love

and ask people to have

faith.

 

There are monsters that hide in the

shadows in alleys and railway stations

and feed off the people who have

no beds

under which a monster might hide.

And there are monsters in the light

who walk right past.

 

And those of us who sleep in safe beds at night

free of monsters

should dream of those who came before

and fought for us.

 

There are monsters hiding under the bed

because we put them there.

Because we can’t see them there.

Because it’s easier.