“Can I sleep in your bed tonight?” asked little Joe.
“No,” said Mummy and Daddy.
“Aw, why not?” said little Joe.
“Because,” said Mummy~
“Little would you know it
But every night at midnight, our bed turns into a wooden raft
And the sheets turn into sails, and the carpet into the wild blue
Rivers of the Amazon, churning with hungry fish, snapping and
Whacking gills against scales, nibbling any toes that happen
To drift off the slab of bed, leaving nothing but
And you know what that means the next morning…?”
“No?” said Joe.
“Your socks don’t fit anymore,” said Mummy.
“So this is why you simply cannot share our bed.
I’ve bought too many socks for you
And it would be a terrible waste.”
“Mummy, I don’t mind about hungry fish or socks,” said Joe.
“I think it would be kind of exciting.”
“Ah, but excitement is not what you want when you go to bed,” said Daddy.
“Why not?” said Joe.
“Because,” said Daddy.
“Little do you realize, but when your body
Gets excited, then the blood starts rushing through it,
And your face goes red and juicy, and it clogs up all your dreamholes.
And your dreamholes can’t be clogged if they’re to do their proper job
Which is to pour all of your daydreams
Into one big nighttime mix-up
Full of all the crazy things that your mind thought up that day
And spin them through your body
So your sleep restores your energy
And then let the morning sunshine
Burst them all away.
“I don’t care,” said Joe, still trying to get on the bed.
“I don’t care if the daydreams stay in my head.”
“Oh but you should care!” his Daddy said.
“See, if your dreamholes are all clogged-like
Then the daydreams will stay solid
And for the sheer space you’d need to hold them,
Well, your face would not suffice.
And then your mum and I would feel
We’d wasted all our efforts
Making a face like yours
That is otherwise so nice.”
Little Joe frowned then.
“But I want to sleep with you,” he said.
“I don’t care about the fish or my head,
I just want to be in your own bed.”
“But what’s so good about our bed anyhow?” said Mummy.
“It’s terribly squishy and smells like feet…”
“And not just any feet,” Daddy piped up with pride.
“Yes, not just any – Daddy’s feet,” Mummy clarified.
“Which as you may not know, my precious,
Won international awards for smelliness,
Where blindfolded mice were asked to rate
The odour factor from one to eight,
And came out at a resounding TEN,
Which means (my darling) they’d kill six men
In half the time it took to take off
Two leather sandals and half a sock.”
“I never smell them,” Joe did say. “I’m asleep all the time, anyway!”
“You think you’re asleep,” said Daddy sagely.
“But you’ve actually passed out with footsmells, largely.”
Poor little Joe began to wail.
“I just want to sleep in YOUR BED. Top and tail!”
“Just ours and no others?” Mummy and Daddy cried.
“Only YOUR BED,” little Joe replied.
“Okay,” said Mummy and Daddy
“Then we’ll give you a kiss right here and go.
We’re just going to sleep in the other room.
Say hi to our pet bedmonster, Joe.”
Poor little Joe said “NOOOOOO!”
Short story by Jade Maitre
Illustrations by Jade Maitre – with big thanks to Pixabay.
Let’s Chat About The Stories ~ Ideas for Talking With Kids
1. How many other reasons can you think of for Joe to sleep in his own bed tonight?
2. If your bed turned into a raft and floated on the Amazon, do you think your socks not fitting you properly would be the biggest reason to be worried? Why or why not?
3. Have you ever asked to sleep in Mummy and Daddy’s bed? Why did you want to sleep there, instead of in your own bed?
4. How do you get yourself to sleep at night?