Spooky Memories of a Kansas Farmhouse
Do you have memories of something that frightened you as a child? Maybe footsteps on the stairs after you’ve gone to bed? I’m intrigued by octogenarian Monte Manka who taps into his childhood memories from the 1930s for his poems. He grew up in Chelsea, Kansas in the same county where Gail Martin lived later in life. Chelsea is gone now, hidden under the water of the El Dorado Reservoir.
Here’s his account of something that really scared him as a child. The house his family lived in showed signs of being haunted. I’ve also added some memories his younger sister had of that same house. The house is gone now, so was it really haunted or ???
Read his poem describing the spooky events and also the other evidence presented. See what you think.
As for me, I’m sure glad I didn’t have to climb those stairs each night and lie awake listening to the strange sounds.
Who or What Made the Footsteps on the Stairs Late at Night?
Those “Spooky” Farmhouse Stairs
A poem by an octogenarian, Monte Manka about his childhood memories
The stairway in that farmhouse
That led up to the second floor
Meant a way to reach my bedroom
Newel posts, balusters, banisters
Landing, risers, and treads
I used them daily
When heading for my upstairs bed.
As I grew older
I often wondered who
Engineered this marvel
Such beautiful workmanship, too.
That old railing and Newel Post
Were well hand-worn
Solid walnut wood
Built long before I was born.
If I wanted a midnight snack
Down these stairs, I could not sneak
The pressure on each riser
Let out a telltale squeak.
As I lay in bed
I pulled the covers
Tight over my head
Because in the stillness of the night
That old stairway would creak
From the bottom step to the top
You’d be scared to speak.
Besides, there was no such thing
As Goblins and Ghosts
Looking to do me harm, I said to myself
As those creaky sounds grew close.
I kept telling myself
While shivering in my bed
I was afraid to fall asleep
Afraid I’d wake up dead.
Thank goodness for that Sandman
He saved my life many a night
By putting me to sleep
And keeping me free from fright.
An Odd Incident
Remembered by Monte Manka
One night while we were sitting by the pot-bellied stove in the living room, keeping warm, suddenly a muffled noise and the house began to fill with smoke.
Dad finally got it under control. One of the bricks was missing on the chimney on the top and that brick fell down the chimney and clogged up the draft. Dad and the hired man had to take the stovepipe apart and remove the brick and all was well–
Funny no wind that night, no earthquake ????????????? Monte
Another Person’s Experience in That House – Monte’s Sister
“Something came up those stairs every night at precisely the same time, around 10:00 or 10:30 I don’t remember which. The footsteps were clear and distinct from the bottom of the stairs to the top.
I am not the only one in the family that heard that either. Ray commented on that very thing. I thought it was just a kid thing and now I know that it wasn’t.
There were other things that went on in that house as well. That house was a haunted house when I was living in it.
Another Haunted Place in Kansas
Read More Essays and Poems by Monte Manka
- Monte Leon Manka
Monte is 83 and now lives in California. He grew up in Chelsea, Kansas. These poems cover his experiences from school days, the Great Depression, small town life, and also his military experience in Korea.
The Manka House Eventually Burned to the Ground
In His 90s Now, Monte Manka Lives in Retirement on the West Coast