Bunyip’s Night

Bunyip in his watery bed tossed and turned, groaned and grunted, wriggled and wiggled, fidgeted and flicked his tail.
He yawned and yawned again.
But still Bunyip couldn’t sleep.
“Who’s making so much noise?” he said.

Bunyip checked his fish were sleeping tight and then splished and splashed out of his dam.

He saw Platypus floating on top of the water.
“Are you making that noise?” Bunyip said.
“Not me,” said Platypus, splashing out of sight.

Bunyip stomped between the pale Eucalypt trees and saw Possum over head.
“Are you making that noise?” Bunyip said.
“Not me,” said Possum, leaping away through the leaves.

Bunyip stomped towards the edge of the forest, whipping his tail behind him, and saw Wombat snuffling in the leaf litter.
“Are you making that noise?” Bunyip said.
“Not me,” said Wombat, backing away into the shadows.

The noise was louder now. It bopped and it zinged, it flew and it crashed, it thudded and it sang.
Bunyip stepped out into the clearing. His enormous mouth dropped open.

There were Bunyips everywhere.

Big ones and small ones, ones with feathers and ones with fur, ones with shimmery scales and ones with twisting tales. Bunyips of every colour and hue. All of them prancing and spinning, dancing and grinning. All of them having a wonderful time.

And Bunyip’s feet started tapping, his hands started clapping, his hips started swaying and his head started bobbing.
“Wow, you look great!” said a Bunyip passing by, “Come dance with us.”

And Bunyip did. He twisted and he twirled, he grinned and he guffawed, he waved and he winked, he fandangoed and he flounced. He was having such wonderful time that he didn’t notice the other Bunyips were drifting away until he heard a low roar and then another and then another!

There were bright lights that made Bunyip blink and thuds and growls that made Bunyip jump. The other bunyips were taking off their tails and their ears and getting into growling boxes.

Monsters! Monsters everywhere!

With a shudder and a shriek Bunyip ran back into the forest, through the Eucalypt trees, and splashed back into his dam. He sank to the bottom and his fish snuggled in around him.
To think! He’d been dancing with monsters and he never even knew it.

It had been a lot of fun though.

He yawned. He didn’t toss or turn, grunt or groan, wriggle or wiggle, fidget or flick his tail. He just snored, snored, snored.

Yellow-Bellied Scaredy Cat – Ages 6 – 8

 

“Don’t move.”

Lewis froze.

“It’s huge! It’s the biggest spider I’ve ever seen!”

Lewis’s tummy tightened.

Danny tried not to giggle. He reached out with a long blade of grass and…

“Get it off, get it off, get it OFF!” Lewis screamed, clawing at his face.

Danny howled with laughter.

“You’re a Yellow-Bellied Scaredy Cat,” he gasped.

“That’s not fair!”

“Yes it is. You were so scared you couldn’t move. Yellow-Bellied Scaredy Cat! Yellow-Bellied Scaredy Cat!”

Lewis stormed off towards the house.

 

When Danny skipped into the kitchen a few minutes later, Lewis was sitting at the table with a spoon in his mouth. He pushed a bowl of ice-cream towards his brother.

“Yes!” Danny said, seizing a spoon.

Danny scraped his bowl clean. Underneath the ice-cream there was something small, and black and…leg-like.

Lewis sniggered.

Danny peered into the bowl. His stomach flip-flopped and his tongue stuck to the roof of his mouth. There were a few more little legs, and antenna and…a wing. His chair toppled over as he stood up.

“Mum? Muuuuum,” he yelled.

 “You’re a Yellow-Bellied Scaredy Cat!” Lewis sang out as Danny raced upstairs.

 

“It was only marker,” Lewis muttered.

“I didn’t even do anything,” Danny added.

Thud!

Danny and Lewis flopped onto their beds. Mum left for work with a jangle of keys, her car growling into the distance. Their sister Jenny was babysitting and the murmur of the TV floated up through their floor. Rain began to lash the window…

Crackle-bz.

The lights went out. The house was very dark and very quiet except…

“Did you hear that?” asked Danny.

“Don’t try and trick me,” sniffed Lewis.

“I’m not. Listen…”

Scrape scrape scrape.

What is it?” Danny asked, climbing onto Lewis’s bed.

“I don’t know,” Lewis said, pulling Mr. Ted onto his lap.

Bdup bdup bdup…crash!

“It’s getting louder!”

“It’s coming closer!”

Lewhiss…Daaaaneee…Where arrrre you?

Quick,” Lewis said, pulling his doona over their heads.

They huddled together and held their breaths.

Creeeeak.

Stomp.

Stomp.

Stomp.

Something gripped the edge of the doona. They shivered and then…

“AAAAAAAAAAAAA!”

“You’re both Yellow-Bellied Scaredy Cats!” Jenny yelled, flinging the doona onto the floor.

Lewis’s heart danced in his chest. Danny’s tummy was filled with butterflies.

But it was only Jenny.

Bubbles of laughter floated up inside them.

“It’s time for dinner, I ordered pizza,” she said, ruffling their hair.

Lewis leapt off his bed, “Last one down stairs is a Pink-Toed Slow Coach,” he yelled as he bolted through the door.

“That’s not fair!” Danny cried, racing after him.

 

 

Bed Bugs – age 3+

“Night.”

 

“G’night.”

 

“Sleep tight.”

 

“Boys, it’s time to turn out the light.”

 

Click

 

“Don’t let the bedbugs bite!

 

“Bedbugs?”

 

“Tiny things with gnashing teeth, hairs that tickle and feet that prickle and…”

 

“Slippers!”

 

“Slippers?”

 

“Dancing slippers. They dace a jig. All night long they dance a jig. Under the doona, across the sheets, over the pillow and…”

 

“The music’s played by the Bogey Man!”

 

“The Bogey Man?”

 

“The Bogey Man and his skeleton band. His voice makes the windows rattle, his eyes make people tremble, his breath smells like dirty socks and…”

 

“He’s not real!”

 

“Are you sure? Maybe he lurks in the dark, maybe his teeth are as sharp as a shark’s, maybe his fingers are long and cold and…”

 

“Can you hear that?”

 

“Something on the stairs?”

 

“Can you hear that?”

 

“Something at the door?”

 

“Can you hear that?”

 

“Something coming in…”

 

“Hide!”

 

“Boys! It’s time to sleep. Now, goodnight!”

 

“Is there really a Bogey Man? Playing music with his skeleton band?”

 

“No, not really. Anyway, the Bogey Man is really small and can’t play any instruments at all.”

 

“Night.”

 

“G’night.”

 

“Sleep tight.”

 

“Good. Night.”

 

“Don’t let the bedbugs bite.”