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  • Kayleigh Willis

Halloween Blog

Updated: Nov 1, 2021


'Little Red Riding Hood' by Daniel Schulz


Kiss me big bad wolf.

Bite me to death!

Let a meadow full of flowers be our bed,

the place where birds

watch us like torture porn

singing pop songs of urban crime.


Take a scalpel. Cut me open.

Don’t be worried.

I’ve got insurance.


And we have a crowd

to please.


You see:

It doesn’t matter

what you do to me.


What matters most

is a Happy End,


the essence

of this fairy tale.


Copyright. Daniel Schulz.





'Not Blood but Beer These Days' by Shane Blades



Halloween spreads its dismal dreaming over me

As I wander alone, lonely now

And am surely seduced

By the early hours of silence

That the evening darkly claims


As old Hessle’s streets shuffle

Into a narrowing now

Finding a finality of dead endings

Each miserable and colder than the last

Shrouded into the mists of the aeons


In a bleakness too long forgotten

And certainly not despaired of

Yet still emptied of any humanity

Where no person dare walk alone

On this moonless, airless, sinful night


But hey, where are all the spooks?

And their accompanying spookettes

Where are the longer undead

Unshriven and ungraved

Where is dead Harlequin and Columbine?


Where do these phantoms tryst?

On this eve before all hallowing

Where are the cool ghouls?

The ghost hostess with the moistest

Or the designer daemons?


Doesn’t every town have a resident ghost

Merely awaiting those dark opportunities

That a gradual nightfall will provide

Waiting

Merely waiting


But no, it seems these darkened alleyways

While dismal, still stand idle

Even the shadows are hiding

Instead of playing to my fears

What kind of Halloween is this?


Where the twilight world remains unseen

And only public houses beckon

Unwelcomingly lit and bright

Welcoming hell’s denizens

On this darkest of all evenings


It is with disappointment that I peer inside

The nearest one, The Cross Keys

To see the phantoms in there

Roistering now and boisterous

Around a blazing wood burned fire


I shudder but no longer from the fear

Rather a cold despondency

An unquieting certainty

That they are sipping on draught ales

Instead of crimson, virgin blood.


And love bites are still given

But come from former victims now

I walk away disgusted

Is nothing truly sacred

In this unholy place?


Corpses must be rising up

To shake skeletal fists

In a heavy borne disgrace

Are all the new age vampyrs

Simply beer drinkers now?


“Chief demon to hell central, failure of all systems. Suggest abort project. Repeat abort project.”

Copyright. Shane Blades.





'THERAMOAN' by Mark Laing



Cut my teeth,

On chainsaw technique,

Dark magic circles ‘neath,

Eyes so weak,

From straining at the leash.


Bind my books,

With broken spines,

Marshall dead armies,

Ranks filed from spliced pines,

Sleeve slashed scripts,

In scalped skin and bloody bits!


My machete is my bond,

Down and dirty deep woods wand,

Render you immortal,

As local legend grows,

Newspaper clipping victim,

Snipped by slightly awkward apprentice psychos,

Soon tyre iron out,

Those little kinks,

Fix that twisted ankle stare,

So, it never blinks!


Old fashioned cure for kids having them conniption fits,

Weapon of masked destruction trimming troubled teen waiting lists,

Subtle connect between sex and death easily found,

When your counsellors getting laid whilst I was left to drown!


So, I wait in weed wreathed waters,

To ensnare and make you share pain without borders,

Like going mouth to maw with man o war,

Stinging nettle surgery pumping every pore.


In your final agony,

You might just see,

The god called upon,

That fateful first Friday.


Listen is that the wind?

Plucking in panic pizzicato violins,

As I rise to reprise resurrection from demise,

Salvation assured by never-ending fear franchise!


Copyright. Mark Laing.




'Stay in the Foxhole' by William Sells


This is crazy, Sarge, they're everywhere, and it's so dark. Let's get outta here.

Stay in the foxhole.

But they've overrun 'A' and 'B' Squads.

Stay in the foxhole.

I can't sit here any longer, I'm going mad, I tell you.

Stay in the foxhole.

Why, Sarge, why? I just, I mean, okay. I'll stay.

Stay in the foxhole.

I'm staying, Sarge, I'm staying.

*******

And you found him like this?

He saved my life...

Yeah, talking to his dead Sarge.

Talking to him? The Sarge's body is here and his head is over there.

Said it was dark.

Dark.


Copyright. William Sells




'Hallowe’en’s been, and left' by Philip Burton

witches in ditches to sleep off the gig –

Gran dozing gently with frogs in her wig –

Dracula back in his coffin, underneath the weather –

bats scattered: gnomes gone home –

genie once more in the bottle – ghost risen to the loft –

and look! The butter has gone soft –

tooth-marks in the apples – eye holes in the pears –

pointy hat squashed very flat – streamers on the stairs –

half-chewed bonfire toffee, sticky, cold and fluffy –

and those little bits of sausage adhering to the wall

where Uncle Jack exploded over nothing much at all.



Copyright. Philip Burton.






'I Am Dead' by David Dumouriez



I am dead.

Now I am alive.

That sojourn done, the

microscopics join and pale;

the solid blocks of life gain frames.

Fear is gone; loss no longer loss.

Discrimination, once a set of

thrusts and wades, becomes

the product of an instant.

Transact with time,

locate this place.

And laugh.



Copyright. David Dumouriez.






'The Uninvited' by Lizzy Barmak


I saw him even though he was hiding,

the wallpaper distorted his luminous lime form,

I pulled the bedcover over my head as if I’d died.

Six fingers, spindly as an Aye-Ayes picker, stripped me

of my cotton shield and forced me up

as if to Tango. But I was no gothic beauty, he no charming vampire;

there would be no romance in our stop -

start, jerky dance.


The first time he visited he hadn’t bothered hiding.

He flipped into my life, a high jumper

with a pitchfork for a pole, landing as though to propose

his angular knee was millimetres from my crotch.

Waving jazz hands and flashing teeth sharp as his horns he ordained,

‘What’s for you won’t pass you by’

then broke into a gravely rendition of ‘Que sera sera.’

his portentous version fading out only after he’d vanished.


His ‘second coming’ was in the guise of tragedy,

the deafening chaotic clanging of church bells that knocks you to your knees

to make desperate, deal-making prayers

to a God you don’t believe in, but despite your conviction

of omniscient omnipresent absence

you still feel abandoned when your cries of,

‘Why!? Why!?’ Why!?’

bring no transcendental consolation.


Three strikes you’re out!

This time he came to gloat singing a reprieve of,

‘Que sera sera’ his breath reeking of mouldy mushrooms –

the ones you shouldn’t pick –

but they say you should face your demons so,

‘You d-don’t look like fucking D-Doris Day.’ I dared.

His slimy lime lips quivered with lascivious laughter.

‘W-what doesn’t k-kill y-you makes you s-stronger.’ I stuttered on.


Relishing the catch in my voice he slavered like a rabid Doberman,

‘Zzat why you’ve a stomach full of candy?’ he jibed

dipping me into Raggedy Ann limpness, shaking out my weakness

and dropping me to the floor to salvage the red dolls from my poison cookies.

With a rancid tongue, so long he didn’t need to stoop, he licked my face

Then, striking a hurdlers pose, he was gone

leaving his toxic saliva to sizzle on my shamed cheeks.

I screamed but nobody heard or, if they did, nobody came.



Copyright. Lizzy Barmak.





(And finally this little beauty... to cover my back....Happy Halloween! K ; )






'Dear Poetry Editor' by Michele Mekel


Thank you for your terse rejection email.

I appreciated the opportunity to read it, as you noted you did my verse.


After careful consideration (the same type you, no doubt, gave my submission),

I regret to inform you that your email now serves as a petition paper

inside the figure crafted in your likeness.


Not to worry, though, as it’s one of many in rotation on my altar,

with the poppet population continuing to grow—daily.


But, maybe on Monday, the ink in your favorite pen will suddenly dry up.

Per chance on Wednesday, the E key on your laptop will start to stick.

As of Friday, you’ll begin to feel telltale tingles of carpal tunnel in your writing hand.


You may think it merely a spate of bad luck.

If you’re superstitious, you may fear you’ve fallen from your muse’s favor.


But a few in your position—and you may be one—

will think back on that poetry you opted against selecting

and wonder.



Copyright. Michele Mekel.








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