Clinkity Clink

Clinkity Clink is a scary story for kids about a gravedigger who steals money from a corpse he is burying. It is based on an old African American folktale that was included in the book Nights With Uncle Remus under the title “A Ghost Story”. It’s actually a variation on the classic jump tale, “The Golden Arm”. A version of this story appeared in Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark.

Clinkity Clink

There was a lonely old woman who got sick and eventually died. She had no family and no close friends, so her neighbors got together and dug a grave for her. They asked the undertaker to make a coffin for her and they dressed her up in her best clothes and laid her body out in her living room.

When the old woman died, her eyes were wide open, staring at everything and seeing nothing. This disturbed the neighbors so much that they found two shiny silver coins on her dresser and put them on her eyelids to keep them closed.

As was the tradition at the time, they held a wake so that people could come by and pay their respects. The neighbors lit some candles and sat up with her corpse so that she would not be alone.

The next morning, the gravedigger arrived to collect her body and take it to the cemetary. When he was about to start digging the grave, he opened the coffin and peered inside. When he saw the silver coins covering her eyes, he immediately snatched them and stuffed them in his pocket.

Looking down at the dead woman, a chill ran down his spine. Her wide open eyes seemed to be staring up at him, watching him as he stole her silver coins. It gave him a creepy feeling, so he grabbed a hammer and quickly nailed the lid on the coffin shut. Then he buried her as fast as he could.

When the gravedigger got home, he put the two silver coins in a tin box and shook it, listening to the rattling sound. Try as he might, he couldn’t forget those eyes staring at him. He placed the tin box on his mantlepiece.

That night, it grew dark and the wind started blowing. The storm shook the house and rattled the windows. A cold wind whistled through the cracks in the walls and down the chimney.

Bizzy, bizzy, buzz-zoo-o-o-o-o! it went. Bizzy, bizzy, buzz-zoo-o-o-o-o!

The gravedigger threw some more wood on the fire and jumped into bed, pulling the covers up over his head.

The wind kept blowing through the cracks.

Bizzy, bizzy, buzz-zoo-o-o-o-o! it went. Bizzy, bizzy, buzz-zoo-o-o-o-o!

The fire flared and flickered and cast evil-looking shadows on the walls. Lying in bed, the gravedigger couldn’t stop thinking about the dead woman’s eyes staring at him. As the wind blew stronger and louder, and the fire popped and snapped, he began to get scared.

Suddenly, he heard another sound.

Clinkity-Clink, Clinkity-Clink, it went. Clinkity-Clink, Clinkity-Clink.

It was the silver dollars rattling in the tin box.

“Hey!” shouted the gravedigger. “Who’s stealing my money?”

But all he heard was the wind blowing, Bizzy, bizzy, buzz-zoo-o-o-o-o! and the flames flaring and flickering, and snapping and popping, and the coins going Clinkity-Clink, Clinkity-Clink.

Shaking with fear, he flung off the covers and sat up in bed. Looking around, he couldn’t see anything. He leaped out of the bed and barred and chained the door. Then he went back to bed, but his head had barely touched the pillow when he heard, Clinkity-Clink, Clinkity-Clink.

Then he heard something way off in the distance. It was a voice crying, “Where’s my money? Give me my money!”

And the wind blew Bizzy, bizzy, buzz-zoo-o-o-o-o! And the fire flared and flickered, and snapped and popped, and the coins in the tin box went Clinkity-Clink, Clinkity-Clink.

The gravedigger was really scared. He got out of bed again and piled all the furniture against the door, and he out a heavy iron skillet over the tin box. Then he jumped back into bed and covered his head with the blankets.

But the money rattled louder than ever, the way off voice cried, “Give me my money! I want my money!” And the wind blew and the fire flared and flickered and snapped and popped, and the gravedigger shivered and shook and hollered out loud, “Oh, Lordy, Lordy!”

Suddenly the front door flew open and in walked the dead woman her had buried. Her eyes were wide open, staring at everything and seeing nothing. And the wind blew Bizee, bizee, BUZ-OOOOOO-o-o-o! And the money went Clinkity-Clink, Clinkity-Clink, and the fire flared and flickered and snapped and popped, and the ghost of the dead woman cried, “Oh, where is my money? Who took my money?” And the gravedigger moaned, “Oh, Lordy, Lordy!”

The gravedigger watched in horror as the woman came closer and closer, her hands groping in the air. It was as if she could hear her silver coins in the tin box going Clinkity-Clink, Clinkity-Clink. Her cold dead hands groped around, trying to find it.

(As you tell the story, stand up with your arms in front of you and begin groping all around you)

The wind went Bizee, bizee, BUZ-OOOOOO-o-o-o! and the money rattled Clinkity-Clink, Clinkity-Clink! And the fire flared and flickered, and snapped and popped, and the gravedigger shivered and shook and moaned, “Oh, Lordy, Lordy!”

And the woman cried, “Give me my money! Who’s got my money?” and suddenly, she jumped on the man and screamed…

(Now quickly jump on somebody in the audience and scream:

“YOU’VE GOT MY MONEY!!!!”

Comments

  1. Jemma_Weird_Forever says

    haha they had a bee buzzing around! good story, abit old dont cha think? heres my version
    Mary had a golden body. She was dead pretty, with her husband james. mary’s gold was worth £10,000,000,00! Anyway james was itching for it, so while she slept he hammered something into her head, hitting her brain!
    at her funeral, he cut off her arm while everyone was drinking. that night he heard “WHeres my golden arm? So he repliedd:
    “Shut up! Your dead woman! Go to heaven and get over it, you have no use”! when the arm started slapping him round the face! Then he heard
    “Ya like this dontcha!” THen he died from a puncture in his brain.
    thanks for reading! Please comment!

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