the monster

I kind of remember the night before, but it’s hard to say.

That morning came like a tidal wave, sweeping away everything we once knew and thought as safe.

I remember being glued to the television for hours, watching everything on repeat, listening to my mother crying in the other room and holding a newspaper, her eyes red and tired.

We saved all of the newspapers.

From then on The Monster had entered our lives: my life.

He would be there for years to come, causing me to look over my shoulder, judge people I shouldn’t have judged, and imagine things I would’ve never before imagined.

Every time I heard that roaring sound of a low-flying aircraft or saw some kind of embellished or paranoid behavior on a subway train, The Monster reminded me of his nasty presence, his lingering effects.

The Monster was always there.

Every now and then we would hear of one of The Monster’s plans, barely thwarted, but somehow foiled.

New laws and paranoia as well as a new wave of political propaganda swept the land.

As I grew up from a boy to a man, I’d never forget The Monster.

I lived with him, we all did.

The Monster and what he did to us was ingrained in our psyches forever.

The Monster was often a topic of conversation, his lasting mark stretching into and out of our college years.

And then one night we were warned of a great announcement.

Our elected leader had awoken us from an early night and the Internet buzzed with activity.

Immediately we were reminded of The Monster, our stomachs choked in fear, but then – relief!

An ease I only remembered from childhood and had thought I’d forgotten.

Brave men had tracked down and slaughtered The Monster responsible for our fear.

Although The Monster’s minions still lurked about the globe, for the first time in the longest time, I slept with a peace I had only known as a boy.

4 comments on “the monster”

  1. Mark says:

    Wow, Josh. Reading this gave me chills multiple times while reading it. That day is still so vivid! SO personal too!

  2. Mom says:

    I Remember you as a young boy, looking at me with terror in your eyes. . Saying “mom how long do we have before they get all of us?” Just heart wrenging to think you had to feel that way…

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