The Idol, The Switch & The Wardrobe
Inside the master bedroom’s door it stood
Upon an old dressing table made from dull, brown wood:
Catholic imagery at its most lurid, a statue of Christ,
Measuring over two feet tall and suffice
To say that I was uneasy about my impending plight,
Having to sleep alone there within plain sight
Of this idol, this graven image, holding out its Sacred Heart,
For just a glimpse of it gave me quite a wary start…
Thus I requested its hasty removal from view
And it was hidden inside a wardrobe without further ado;
Then when finally I settled down and shut my eyes,
The silence broke to hasten my demise,
Triggered by a curious squeaking
And a rather spooky creaking
Caused by the opening of a wardrobe door,
Prompting me to leap from bed onto the carpeted floor…
Exiting quickly onto the landing,
I could then clearly see Jesus standing
Looking my way and I shook in disbelief,
Until the offensive figure was removed, to my utter relief…
After the spirit of Christ had appeared from the gloom,
It was a miracle…
…that I slept at all in that darkened room…
Completely true, early 1970s.
I had stayed at my future parents’ in law’s house while they were on holiday but that figure of Christ wasn’t the most calming ornament I had ever come across.
It was placed inside the wardrobe out of sight and then one door creaked open in the darkness.
Jumping from the bed, I pulled open the door and from the faint landing light, I could see the figure, almost smirking at me.
I asked for it to be removed completely.
The house was on The Ridgway, Erdington, Birmingham and the view on the opposite side of the road from that bedroom window was rather apt: Witton Cemetery…