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Monday, October 30, 2023

Halloween Poems


                                                            Halloween Poems

Poems are often scary for Halloween, but some folks enjoy a chuckle or two. Here are a couple.

(Remember, all poems are best read out loud. These two are no exception.)

                                     Colonel Fazackerley

                                                        by Charles Causley

Colonel Fazackerley Butterworth-Toast

Bought an old castle complete with a ghost,

But someone or other forgot to declare

To Colonel Fazack that the specter was there.

On the very first evening, while waiting to dine,

The Colonel was taking a fine sherry wine,

When the ghost, with a furious flash and a flare,

Shot out of the chimney and shivered, "Beware!"

Colonel Fazackerley put down his glass

And said, "My dear fellow, that's really first class!

I just can't conceive how you do it at all.

I imagine you're going to a Fancy Dress Ball?"

At this, the dread ghost gave a withering cry.

Said the Colonel (his monocle firm in his eye),

"Now, just how you do it, I wish I could think.

Do sit down and tell me, and please have a drink."

The ghost in his phosphorous cloak gave a roar

And floated about between ceiling and floor.

He walked through a wall and returned through a pane

And backed up the chimney and came down again.

Said the Colonel, "With laughter, I'm feeling quite weak!"

(As trickles of merriment ran down his cheek).

"My housewarming party. I hope you won't spurn.

You must say you'll come and give us a turn!"

At this, the poor specter- quite out of his wits-

Proceeded to shake himself almost to bits.

He rattled his chains, and he clattered his bones

And he filled the whole castle with mumbles and moans.

but Colonel Fazackerley, just as before,

He was simply delighted and called out, "Encore!"

At which the ghost vanished, his efforts in vain,

And never was seen at the castle again.

"Oh dear, what a pity!" said Colonel Fazack.

"I don't know his name, so I can't call him back."

And then, with a smile that was hard to define,

Colonel Fazackerley went in to dine.

I included the following poem, which has an elf, part of Halloween lore.


                             The Elf and the Dormouse

                                                  by Oliver Herford

Under a toadstool

Crept a wee Elf,

Out of the rain

To shelter himself.

Under the toadstool,

Sound asleep,

Sat a big Dormouse

All in a heap.

Trembled the wee Elf,

Frightened, and yet

Fearing to fly away

Lest he get wet.

To the next shelter-

Maybe a mile!

Sudden the wee Elf

Smiled a wee smile,

Tugged till the toadstool

Toppled in two.

Holding it over him

Gaily he flew.

Soon, he was safe home

Dry as could be.

Soon woke the Dormouse-

"Good gracious me!"

Where is my toadstool?"

Loud he lamented.

__And that's how umbrellas

First were invented.

In a National Geographic article, William Shakespeare wrote about witches in Macbeth as  King James I of England believed in witches and witchcraft. The King wrote Daemonologie in 1597 and presided over the persecution of witches in Scotland.

I hope you enjoyed my blogs on Halloween. I will close by posting my favorite poem by Harry Behn.


Tonight is the night

When dead leaves fly

Like witches on switches

Across the sky,

When Elf and sprite

Flit through the night

On a moony sheen.

Tonight is the night.

When leaves make a sound

Like a gnome in his home

Under the ground,

When spooks and trolls

Creep out of holes

Mossy and green.

Tonight is the night

When pumpkins stare

Through sheaves and leaves


Where ghouls and ghost

And goblin host

Dance round their queen.

It's Hallowe'en.

I'm glad it is dead leaves that fly like witches and make a sound like a gnome, and it is the pumpkins who stare.

In my mind, it's great that "real" witches, ghouls, and ghosts don't exist. Still, I wish you all a Happy Halloween! 


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