There is no home like the house on Willett I grew up in.
This might be an obvious statement, but it really was special.
You see, my house had monsters. And every night as I went to bed, we would go to war.
Shrieking banshees and clawing imps lived in the walls, tormenting me with their constant howling and scratching.
A werewolf made his nest in our attic, dragging his claws and dripping his slobber on the boards above my head.
Frankenstein’s monster lived in our basement, howling and rattling his chains every time he got too cold in the winter.
For years, I slept under my blankets, a flashlight my only protection against the things that went bump in the night.
But then I got older, and I started to help my father around the house.
I helped him fix the drafty mouse holes in our walls, to patch leaking, rattling pipes in our attic, to replace the antiquated furnace in the basement.
As I worked with my father, the monsters started to disappear, one at a time.
Then, one night, they weren’t there at all.
In that house on Willett, my father had taught me to slay monsters.
Every house in Midtown Memphis has its own set of monsters. They are the unique noises old homes make that you can never quite decide if they are your pipes expanding…or something horrible living in your walls. I find children that survive these monsters to be of a heartier, more assured stock than those that grew up in monster-free homes.