“Bedtime Prayer” by Richard F. Yates

When I was three or four, my mom taught me this cute, little prayer to say before bed:

“Now I lay me down to sleep. I pray the Lord my soul to keep. If I should die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take…”

I never slept much as a child. Horrible nightmares—the lights on until I was well into my teens…

Not only had my mom told me that it was possible for me to DIE in my sleep, blissfully unaware of any danger I might be in, but she also implied that there were OTHER THINGS that might take my “soul” besides the Lord—otherwise, why did I have to beg the Lord (the Lord of WHAT was never made very clear to me) to be sure to collect mine…

I think my mom believed she was comforting me with that little prayer—but it didn’t work…

—Richard F. Yates
(Primitive Thoughtician and Grand Hoohaa of The P.E.W.)

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About richardfyates

Compulsive creator of the bizarre and absurd. (Artist, writer, poet, provocateur...)
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