Dear bogeyman,

I know you know I am terrified of the bogeyman under my bed, the one living on our rooftop and the one inside my head. I know you know I am terrified of you; I can never breathe with you near, I can never dream, I can never sleep. You broke my heart when I was seven, you've been breaking my heart for twelve years, you never stopped, dear bogeyman, I do not know what it is like to not have a broken heart.

I know I take up more space than you originally planned; more than you originally allowed, I know my loud voice angers the wolves inside you, I know you think I am stealing your glory, your years, your pride; and I wish I could shrink, shrink all the way to the ground and rid you of the shame of having me living, living, living, occupying your space, taking up too much space for someone so insignificant.

I lay in bed all day- hiding from you- as my body purges itself of itself, trying to make itself smaller and smaller, trying to fit the space you left for me on your trophy stand.

Once, when I was five, I told you I loved you, it seems you thought it wise to reward me by stealing my soul, hiding it in your pocket, it seems you thought it wise to deceive me, lie about my soul's whereabouts and make me believe I was a crossroads demon; soulless, just like you.

Dearest bogeyman, there is a line in "the hand that rocks the cradle" by the smiths that haunts me;

"My life down I shall lie                                                                                                                          
If the bogeyman should try                                                                                                                  
To play tricks on your sacred mind                                                                                                       
To tease, torment, and tantalize."

I think of all the people who did not have the man who was supposed to protect them from bogeymen turn into a bogeyman himself.

Dearest bogeyman, I wonder, I always wonder, I wonder if the burden of protecting me turned you into this monster.