Dear Halloween Night
Dear Halloween Night, crumbly and soon,
you devil’s handmaiden, you sweet arm of ruin,
I don’t believe a thing you say.
I used to wait up for the owl to give his carol-howl
All is frightful. All is delightful. All is All.
I used to feel so small. The fire-colored trees
would weep for their departing leaves and ancient wind
would come round, his beard stiff as hay,
his corn-cropped corpses of leaves leavening again and again
over the yard. The ground is once again hard.
I could have sworn I saw spiders work magic on their looms.
When it is cold enough, the dead come out of their rooms.
Ghosts are born, saints go sweet and sad to be undone,
Stars hide and seek like magi for the spoken one.
Now the moon is full like a full moon
or like Bethlehem’s star. Everything is like something from afar.
Now I remember when I would pretend
and now I miss you, you livery-faced moon man,
you monsters under my bed, you ghost of a friend.
Editor’s Note: The rhyme, imagery, and alliteration of this poem delight the senses. Each line has something fun to say, yet it never descends into the trite conceit of a nursery rhyme. This is a grown-up’s poem about Halloween.