Elizabeth Massie, whose first short story was published back in the primitive days of 1984 (for two whole dollars!), is a two-time Bram Stoker Award-winning and Scribe Award-winning author of novels, short fiction, media-tie ins, poetry, nonfiction, and more. Her novels and collections include Sineater, Hell Gate, Desper Hollow, Wire Mesh Mothers, Homeplace, Naked on the Edge, Dark Shadows: Dreams of the Dark (co-authored with Mark Rainey), Versailles, The Tudors: King Takes Queen, The Tudors: Thy Will Be Done, Homegrown, Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Power of Persuasion, It Watching, Madame Cruller’s Couch and Other Dark and Bizarre Tales, The Great Chicago Fire, and more. She is also the creator of the Ameri-Scares series of spooky, middle-grade novels -- a series which was optioned for television by Warner Horizon. Beth continues to craft novels of all kinds. When not writing, she loves to knit hats and scarves, go geocaching, and travel places she’s never been before. And if she can find the remains of an abandoned amusement park, all the better!



Molly and Wally, they wanted no more
Than to go snag a sammich at Sal’s Snacky Store,
A quick, easy trip from their flat, up the street,
Just follow the warm scent of Sal’s putrid feet.

They got to the shop and they wandered right in,
To find barefoot Sal at the frozen food bin,
He seemed unaware and was facing away,
So, after a moment, old Wally yelled, “Hey!”

Sal spun on his toes and his head flew right off,
The head hit the floor with a grunt and a cough.
It bounced once then landed beside Molly’s shoe
With a flop and zlop and a blop of red goo.

Molly, unfazed, picked the head from the floor
And with her well-known, tender, soft-spoken roar,
Screamed “WE WANT A SAMMICH you careless old jerk!
Put this back on your shoulders and then go to work!”

The head made a face (as a head’s wont to do)
And whispered, “Now listen, you sweet, darling shrew,
I’m a bit without hands to fill your request,
So shut your sweet mouth, put me down, let me rest.”

With Sal’s barefoot body out flat by the bin,
Mol kicked the head round the floor with a grin,
Then aimed it at Sal, where it bumped on his chest;
With the eyes staring upward it came to a rest.

As much as Mol wanted the head to attach,
The body stayed motionless – it was dead, ‘natch.
The head said, “Get out of here, leave us alone,
Or I’ll roll right over and bite your leg bone.”

Molly and Wally would not be denied,
“A sammich we came for!” the couple then cried.
But the cooler with meats was held tight with a lock
And nothing was left on Sal’s stained butcher block.

So, Molly and Wally found a loaf of bread,
Then looked at each other then looked at Sal’s head,
“It’s chubby,” said Mol with a nod and a grin,
“Let’s do it,” said Wally, “I’ll take off the skin.”

With that, old Sal’s head made for tender, fresh meat,
Cut length-wise, so carefully and oh, so neat,
Some olives and pickles, some parmesan cheese,
All together fresh sammiches, ready to please.

Yet as they turned ‘round to head back to the door,
With sammiches wrapped for their trip from the store,
Two hands shot out, rapidly, caught both their feet
And tripped Mol and Wal to stop their retreat.

Both Molly and Wally’s heads smashed on the tile,
By Sal’s headless body (that wished it could smile),
The arms flexed its fingers then went still once more.
Three corpses lay now on the shop’s unkempt floor.

The mice in Sal’s pantry sneaked out for a peek,
A rat with red eyes gave a loud, joyous squeak,
Together they dined on the tasty, wet gore,
Human-sammiches right there in Sal’s Snacky Store.

(With apologies to Eggie AP)

It was, I dunno, maybe two years ago, 
   In a dumpy shack out on Route 3,
That a woman lived there who’d give you a fright,
   They called her ol’ Spooky-Belle Lee;
Yeah, yeah, you’ve heard of that creepy old gal,
   She was one scary, badass banshee.

I was real nosy about that-there ghoul, 
   In her dumpy shack out on Route 3, 
So, I sneaked down the road to catch me a peek
  At the bee-otch called Spooky-Belle Lee— 
With my gun and a beer, I hoped to get near
   Without that freak noticing me.

And, yep, that’s the reason that, two years ago,
   I lost my hand, it’s gone, look, see?
But I don’t care none, oh, I had such fun with
   That creepy-freak Spooky-Belle Lee;
I quietly entered her shack by the road,
   My gun, my beer, and me,
In through the back door, ‘cross holes in the floor,
And I spotted ol’ Spooky-Belle Lee.

There she was, sittin’ and spittin’ and knittin’
Upon a chair stinky with pee,
She was bald as a baby (and Yep! I think maybe
There was blood mixed in with her tea.)
A wind rocked the dump, making her jump,
It was then she noticed me.

But our wonder was stronger by far than fear,
   At least for a second or three— 
Then her eyes flashed all crazy, bright orangey-red— 
   And she thought she could overtake me.
She leapt straight at me, I laughed then I grabbed her
   And held tight to Spooky-Belle Lee.

Strong as a pit bull with teeth like sharp fish hooks,
   Her bite I just couldn’t shake free,
She gnawed my right hand off, but I clawed those eyes out
   With my other hand, yes, oh, such glee!
Dropped my gun, cursed a bit, but then hit her real hard
And knocked her cold dead, I could see,
   That bitchy—that witchy—that twitchy old hag
   In her dumpy-shack out on Route 3.

And now here you are, you nosy young fool,
You sneaked in for one quick look-see,
You heard I took over the ghouly gal’s homestead,
This dumpy-shack here on Route 3.
But I caught you, easy; you ain’t goin’ nowhere,
And your blood will flavor my tea.
Your warm blood squeezed into my tea.


He’s got a bag o’ nifty knives
All shiny, sharp, and keen,
He sits upon the housetop there,
Where he cannot be seen.

Below him grow the trees of green
And flows the river cold,
Unknowing and uncaring bloom the
Flowers bright and bold.

My brother on the roof cares not
For nature and her booty,
He is a mindless, stupid soul,
Who wants to find his beauty.

And so, his nose, once long and bent,
Is shaven down to naught,
And there upon the bloodied thatch
Lies shiny, scarlet snot.

He’s narrowed chubby fingers now
Until they’re thin and small,
And what were once two floppy ears
Are tiny, like a doll.

He’s carved away unsightly rolls
Of fat on gut and thigh,
He squints his eyes, the flashing knife
Makes skin and blubber fly.

We do not know how long he’ll sit
And do his overhauling.
From in the house, as we look up,
His overflow is falling.

Leaking though the rafters…see?
Now viscera oozes, slow,
Onto the floor, bright bits of gore,
Like bright red, ghastly snow.

My Mama says we should ignore
The antics of that goof,
He’ll soon grow tired, he’ll be too dry
To whittle on the roof.

But I’m quite mad at Brother, for
He is my twin, you see.
I carved myself last week,
And damn, he always copies me.