Mirth and Musings Part 16

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I am encountering a rise in anticipation as the Eve approaches and I find that anticipation can quickly turn to anxious knots as preparations progress.  Still its not without merit as I liken it to the same apprehension I would feel venturing out into the darkness, drawn towards the smoky lights of flickering jack-o-lanterns, the more ambitious smoke and mirrors of yard haunts, even the rather mundane porch light.  In my day (yes, I am that old) we left the house in our made up costumes, lucky enough when Mom took a hand, and with just a group of friends with hands grasping well worn pillowcases, brown paper bags or the (dare to dream) printed plastic shopping bag, with its colorful Halloween images, take ourselves off into the unknown.  This New Yorker Magazine cover by Abe Birnbaum is a wonderful image of a group of friends heading out along well worn or maybe undiscovered paths on that annual candy rite of passage.  Certainly the prospect of free candy had its merits, but I think it was the absence of adult supervision that really appealed to me.  We could go anywhere – talk to anyone – take part in mazes and haunted garages and plans and plots for short-cuts to far off neighborhoods we only really saw from the school bus windows.  It was a no holds barred aberration of rules, instead of being home before the street lights came on we made our way through the darkness to those elusive flickering lights of yards and doorways, instead of making certain we were dressed appropriately for our destination we chose the rattiest or gaudiest draping we could find to deck ourselves out to fit our idea of “witch” or “ghoul” or “Batman” or “princess” and instead of being told we couldn’t have one more piece of candy, we could gorge as we went along, sure in the knowledge of one more street to plunder before the porches went dark.  Sigh.  So despite the hype of candy checking and actual horror of “trunk o treating” I extend my heartfelt appreciation to those of you still doing it the old fashioned way on both sides of the door.  To you Trick or Treaters and Haunters everywhere making the journey and the destination equally worthwhile.

Moonlit Revel

This one I will preface by saying you may have noticed in my header the lines from a poem that I change occasionally.  I post it here in its complete form, I hope you enjoy it.  The work was inspired by this stamp image that I once purchased after customizing with a line from my poem.  I am getting these again this year for my Halloween invites, you can purchase by the sheet, these are a great product offered by Zazzle.com go online and pick and choose and edit to your hearts desire.  Can’t wait to use these again. Enjoy!

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“Stroll with me beneath the Moon,

for surely They’ll be coming soon

to share with us the deepening gloom,

that must be Halloween.

Fellow Revelers walk this Night,

as They awake from yearly plight

deprived til now of sweet delight,

that must be Halloween.

Mischievousness the only goal,

for these few hours on parole.

And none but They could be so droll

that must be Halloween.

Sorry am I that They must wait,

upon the Eve to cross the gait.

Alas that is Their yearly Fate,

that must be Halloween.

All too soon the Night will fade,

and All shall pass into the Shade

to wait upon the next parade,

that must be Halloween.

Perhaps you’ll stroll with me once more,

when Gate stands wide and Spirits tour.

No other sight stir’s my hearts core,

that must be Halloween.”

-AE

Autumn Eyes

70JFwxBlood moon at zenith

From earth fog will rise

Prospects awaiting

Seen through autumn eyes

 

Cunning and patient

While folly foils fear

Silently stalwart

As hot breath draws near

 

Wind winds the cornstalks

A deep throaty hiss

Blackbirds go silent

A sign alls amiss

 

Ripe rabble en route

Yet focused on farce

Caught within whirlwind

Too beguiled to parse

 

Soon passing threshold

Point of no return

Eyes glowing hotter

Revealing the yearn

 

Rustling unbidden

And shifts unexplained

Imminent movement

From malice unchained

 

Traversing corn maze

Dupes still unaware

As soon all succumb

To Halloweens scare

- by A.E. October, 2016

Nothing grim about this…

Rogers Gardens has announced their annual Halloween Boutique Opening “Grimm Tales” will debut on Friday, September 2nd @ 9:00am!  Visiting this amazing boutique yearly has become a favorite for me and I hope you find time to stop by, it will not disappoint.

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“…and the Storyteller paused…
and it was as if the wonders he retold had cast a spell upon him…”-A.E.

“The forest is dark and enchanted…branches creak and leaves rustle as trees close in, obscuring the path home.  Wander deep into the shadows and you’ll find frightful folklores, fantastical stories and chilling tales.  These bedtime stories will give you nightmares, and you’ll discover that not all fairy tales end happily-ever-after.” –Rogers Gardens

 

Mirth and Musings Part 7

The weather here on the west coast is definitely Fall-like at last, chill temperatures and brisk gusts of wind remind me of why I prefer this time of year.  Time to break out the scarves and mittens, flannels and fuzzy slippers.  Just to make cozying up that much more enjoyable.  The approaching Thanksgiving holiday makes me pause and reflect, as I still see pumpkins decorating porches and sills and tabletops.  We always save one or two from October to enjoy through November – a bright orange reminder – it’s interesting how the pumpkin, the idea of it, transitions from the herald of giving treats to the herald of giving thanks.  Many of us will close the holiday with that slice of spicy sweetness.  It’s a fitting way to bookend Autumn. Enjoy this New Yorker cover from 1973, a house simply celebrating the season.

New Yorker Magazine, Stevenson, 1973

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Boo

Standing on the step to receive them was an old woman, neatly dressed in black silk, with a white cap and apron. This was Mrs. Umney, the housekeeper, whom Mrs. Otis, at Lady Canterville’s earnest request, had consented to keep on in her former position. She made them each a low curtsey as they alighted, and said in a quaint, old-fashioned manner, “I bid you welcome to Canterville Chase.” Following her, they passed through the fine Tudor hall into the library, a long, low room, panelled in black oak, at the end of which was a large stained-glass window. Here they found tea laid out for them, and, after taking off their wraps, they sat down and began to look round, while Mrs. Umney waited on them.

Suddenly Mrs. Otis caught sight of a dull red stain on the floor just by the fireplace and, quite unconscious of what it really signified, said to Mrs. Umney, “I am afraid something has been spilt there.”
“Yes, madam,” replied the old housekeeper in a low voice, “blood has been spilt on that spot.”
“How horrid,” cried Mrs. Otis; “I don’t at all care for bloodstains in a sitting-room. It must be removed at once.”

The old woman smiled, and answered in the same low, mysterious voice, “It is the blood of Lady Eleanore de Canterville, who was murdered on that very spot by her own husband, Sir Simon de Canterville, in 1575. Sir Simon survived her nine years, and disappeared suddenly under very mysterious circumstances. His body has never been discovered, but his guilty spirit still haunts the Chase. The bloodstain has been much admired by tourists and others, and cannot be removed.

Oscar Wilde
The Canterville Ghost, 1887

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Fireside beckons…

I forced my way against an impalpable pressure to the foot of the stairs and looked up at her. She stood, taller than I had seen her before, expanding and gathering form, palely luminous. She began to float down towards me, with a slow, sweeping movement I saw the features; the eyes were intensifying their light. I did not want Stella to see those eyes.

I stood on the second step, with my hands behind me gripping the rail. In that way I could hold myself up from falling, despite the trembling of my knees. I shook all over; my skeleton was of ice and my flesh shrank from it; I could not get my voice out of my throat; the words that I spoke were whispered and my laugh hoarse…

The form shrank and dwindled, losing outline and light; it became a greyish column of fog with a luminous nucleus, and it bent. While I pressed upward, it doubled back. My voice was frozen in my throat, but my thoughts went on beating it, like a flail. I saw it cowering, wreathing and writhing like smoke under a downward wind.

Dorothy Macardle
The Uninvited, 1942

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