The Mr Tiddle Riddle
Have you ever wondered what makes for …
… a genuinely frightening story?
One that steals your soul, and you both adore and abhor…
… at the same time at the deliciousness of its outlawry!
One always wonders what truly scares,
… does the cat scare, as the scaredy cat suggests?
Do thousand-yard stares…
Scare? Or the dead stare of the possessed?
I am never sure these days,
You know – because everyone is different!
Olden styled horrors used to be all the craze,
…. But now the style is for sudden impactive deliverance!
As a child, a good horror and ghost story,
Was found in the pages of a battered tome,
… worked on the premise of fear, over that of just bloody gory,
Like the films show that we watch at home!
But we don’t seemingly scare like we used to, do we?
… once upon a time scares were simpler,
They were not just digitally complicated computery,
…. But gave goosebumps and made one shudder!
I think the best ones are those that leave you …
…. Always unknowing,
You simply have a dreadful fear and feel askew,
… and no mind how hard you try to let go, it just keeps growing!
My next-door French neighbour, sweet old soul that she is,
…. Has an old cat, called Mr Tiddle!
Who sadly and rather annoyingly takes the piss,
…. Out of my garden, little by little!
So far, he has taken two innocent pigeons,
… eaten them all the way down to just their toes!
A pile of feathers, a blob of goo and a bloodied smidgen,
…. Is all that remains left to decompose!
I keep asking her to put a bell on Mr Tiddle,
…. To give the feeding birds a fighting chance!
They could at least take to the wind and skediddle,
… instead of falling victim to unfair circumstance!
However, she, the neighbour merely laughs in my face,
… calls Mr Tiddle’s exploits natural behaviour!
I look at her sternly, angered and yet emotionless,
“I see, let’s hope that Mr Tiddles himself gets not devoured!”
“What a strange thing to say?”, she says to me in shock!
… “l do hope my Mr Tiddles is safe in your garden?”
“I do beg your pardon …
“He’ll be fine, as long as he steers clear of the hemlock!”
“But l do think, if you love him, you should keep him inside …
… or adorn his neck with a bell!”
She , next door looks wide eyed and horrified!
…. and Yells!
“Be off with you, you’re no goodly neighbour of mine….
…. threatening my cat with poisoned harm!”
“Call yourself a guardian of creatures, you are a swine!!”
…. “If you are not careful l shall call the gendarme!”
“Madam, l am so sorry to have caused you upset,
…. Forgive me, l just don’t wish to see darling Tiddles at loss,
I shall place my feeders much higher and set…
…. Them further aloft!”
The madam of the house smiled, and bade me goodbye,
…. But l had already a plan in motion,
A week later, l knocked at her door and offered her some freshly cooked pie,
… as a peace offering, but she looked bedraggled with emotion!
And promptly burst into tears and cried!!
“My Mr Tiddles has gone, vanished and disappeared,
… did you hurt him?” “No!!” [Although l might’ve lied!]
“Oh that’s terrible my dear, but no less than l feared!
“I did say if you loved him,
…. You should have put a bell on it!”
Heard that once in a song or was it a hymn?
Matters not, it seems to fit!
“Maybe he has been stolen, by those on a mission!”
…. “Or even kidnapped by mischievous pigeons!”
The madam looks at me in absolute terror!!
“No, you didn’t that’s an error …
…. Have you seen my cat, Mr Tiddle?”
“Well, l am not sure, that’s certainly a riddle …
….. Do eat you pie dear, before it goes cold,
That can happen with meat that’s old!
…. Madam looks at me and the pie in stunned silence and glowering,
She’s so not sure of anything now, it’s all so fiendishly unknowing!
© Rory Matier 2020