The Smoke Alarm Screamed

The Smoke Alarm Screamed

The smoke alarm screamed


into their ears and those of the semi-

deaf dog at three a.m. “Holy ____!” the

dog screamed not to mention what his

parents cried. It was that loud.

False alarm,

the last of many the dog’s dad thought.  He

crawled out of bed, a sweaty dream left behind.

It was a moment of mixed emotions.  He was glad

to be out of the dream but one, he had to fix the alarm,

and two, the dream might resume as often they did

when he crawled back into bed after taking a three a.m.

pee break.

For months, the smoke alarm had been losing

its mind, but they didn’t want to accept the sad

reality of SAAD, Smoke Alarm Alzheimer’s

Disease, but reality is reality and must be

faced especially at three a.m. when they

had just been scared out of their undies,

once again.

Enough is enough, they thought.  It was

sad but they had to put the ancient, twenty-

year-old electric, without battery backup,

smoke alarm, three-hundred-years-

old in human years, out of their (not

its) misery by committing SAE, Smoke Alarm


He climbed the short ladder and performed

what would go from surgery to an autopsy in

short order.  It was so sad. In trepidation, he

headed back to bed and, true to form, resumed the

dream about White Tailed Rattlesnakes but mostly

sharp toothed Gila Monsters challenging at

every turn.

He wished his son-in-law hadn’t sent photos

of the rattler and Gila from a backpacking trip

in Arizona, but he consulted Freud and Jung

and acknowledged that it probably meant some-

thing more, something that at 3:30 a.m. he wasn’t

real keen on analyzing. So, he slept as best he could,

given circumstances,

And he awoke, took a shower, dressed and headed

to Lowe’s to purchase a newborn, baby-aged battery

operated smoke detector that was old enough to sleep

through the night so all he would have to worry about

were snarly Gila Monsters, his long deceased parents,

maybe an appearance or two of his late wife and

Freud and Jung.

False alarm, pee break, once again, euthanasia, every

turn, given circumstances, Freud and Jung, dreams,

reality, life.

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