Halloween 2016



“Was it the boogeyman?”

A Poem for Halloween

“All Hallows Night”
By Lizette Woodworth Reese

Two things I did on Hallows Night:—
Made my house April-clear;
Left open wide my door
To the ghosts of the year.

Then one came in. Across the room
It stood up long and fair—
The ghost that was myself—
And gave me stare for stare.


Musings on Halloween: William Shakespeare

“Eye of newt, and toe of frog,
Wool of bat, and tongue of dog,
Adder’s fork, and blind-worm’s sting,
Lizard’s leg, and owlet’s wing,—
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.
Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn, and caldron bubble.”


Art for Halloween

Below – Henry Fuseli: “The Nightmare”


A Second Poem for Halloween

“All Hallows’ Eve”
By Dorothea Tanning

Be perfect, make it otherwise.
Yesterday is torn in shreds.
Lightning’s thousand sulfur eyes
Rip apart the breathing beds.
Hear bones crack and pulverize.
Doom creeps in on rubber treads.
Countless overwrought housewives,
Minds unraveling like threads,
Try lipstick shades to tranquilize
Fears of age and general dreads.
Sit tight, be perfect, swat the spies,
Don’t take faucets for fountainheads.
Drink tasty antidotes. Otherwise
You and the werewolf: newlyweds.


“Ah, distinctly I remember . . .”

A Third Poem For Halloween

“Ghosts and Fashion”
By Elaine Equi

Although it no longer has a body
to cover out of a sense of decorum,
the ghost must still consider fashion—
must clothe its invisibility in something
if it is to “appear” in public.
Some traditional specters favor
the simple shroud—
a toga of ectoplasm
worn Isadora-Duncan-style
swirling around them.
While others opt for lightweight versions
of once familiar tee shirts and jeans.
Perhaps being thought-forms,
they can change their outfits instantly—
or if they were loved ones,
it is we who clothe them
like dolls from memory.


Art for Halloween

Below – Louis Jacques Mande Daguerre: “Ruins of Holyrood Chapel”


“Listen to them. Children of the night. What music they make!”

Musings on Halloween: Richelle E. Goodrich

“Treats and tricks.
Witch broomsticks.
Lick their lips.

Crows and cats.
Vampire bats.
Capes and fangs
And pointed hats.

Werewolves howl.
Phantoms prowl.
Upon us now.”


“Black Cat”
By Rainer Maria Rilke

A ghost, though invisible, still is like a place
your sight can knock on, echoing; but here
within this thick black pelt, your strongest gaze
will be absorbed and utterly disappear:
just as a raving madman, when nothing else
can ease him, charges into his dark night
howling, pounds on the padded wall, and feels
the rage being taken in and pacified.
She seems to hide all looks that have ever fallen
into her, so that, like an audience,
she can look them over, menacing and sullen,
and curl to sleep with them. But all at once
as if awakened, she turns her face to yours;
and with a shock, you see yourself, tiny,
inside the golden amber of her eyeballs
suspended, like a prehistoric fly.

Black cats are being overlooked in favour of more selfiegenic ones.

Musings on Halloween: The Blood Brothers

“Every small town has at least one house the children whisper about; the type of house that has always been abandoned; where the once pristine white paint has faded to a grimy gray; where the windows are boarded, and the lawn never grows; where children hold their breath and close their eyes as they pass by. A house that sounds like it contains an army of whispering spirits when the wind whistles through the nearby trees.”


Art for Halloween

Below – Ivan Bilibin: “Vassilissa in the Forest”


A Fifth Poem for Halloween

“An Autumn Chant”
By Karen Bergquist

I will dance
The dance of dying days
And sleeping life.
I will dance
In cold, dead leaves
A bending, whirling human flame.
I will dance
As the Horned God rides
Across the skies.
I will dance
To the music of His hounds
Running, baying in chorus.
I will dance
With the ghosts of those
Gone before.
I will dance
Between the sleep of life
And the dream of death.
I will dance
On Samhain’s dusky eye,
I will dance.


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