Nobody ever asks why they call him The Boogie-man.
It’s because he has music in his soul. You can find him
playing the marimba in the zocalo on the evenings
he is not menacing children. When he is though,
terrorizing the innocent, he does so with style.
He peeks his head out of open closets, riffing,
“Booga booga, dittly dooga, boom boom boom.”

When the children cover their heads, and cry out for
daddy, he falls in tempo with their screams,
“Fapity, dittidy, skittatee, deeeeeeee”
until there is a perfect mix of harmony on the long “eeeeee,”
and then when daddy appears, he slips back
into the darkness, still riffing in his head.
He pops out, and then into another room
with another bed.

At daybreak he changes into his sneakers again,
his “boogie-shoes,” and he taps his foot
while he plays the marimba, rolling his hips—
all day shuffling, riffing, foot-tapping,
until it’s time again, when he pops out to boogie-scare,
and boogie-harmonize with the screams of the
boogie-terrified. He is the “Boogie-man”
and he has music in his soul.

  • Glenn Lyvers