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Showing posts from October, 2013

All Hallow's Read: All Souls

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Happy Halloween!

Enjoy this poem as part of All Hallow's Read 2013.

For maximum effect, read it aloud.




All Souls


            I

A thin moon faints in the sky o’erhead,
And dumb in the churchyard lie the dead.
Walk we not, Sweet, by garden ways,
Where the late rose hangs and the phlox delays,
But forth of the gate and down the road,
Past the church and the yews, to their dim abode.
For it’s turn of the year and All Souls’ night,
When the dead can hear and the dead have sight.

            II

Fear not that sound like wind in the trees:
It is only their call that comes on the breeze;
Fear not the shudder that seems to pass:
It is only the tread of their feet on the grass;
Fear not the drip of the bough as you stoop:
It is only the touch of their hands that grope —
For the year’s on the turn, and it’s All Souls’ night,
When the dead can yearn and the dead can smite.

            III

And where should a man bring his sweet to woo
But here, where such hundreds were lovers too?
Where lie the dead lips that thirst…

Library Loot: The Halloween Edition

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Yes, it's nearly Halloween - can't you tell from my Library Loot?

There is enough scary stuff (or possible scary stuff) to keep me occupied. The problem is, not much has scared me yet.

I also picked up a little classic literature. I am hoping that will satisfy.
Ghost Story has a reputation of being one of the scariest books written in the 1970s. I wanted traditional horror. Alas, I didn't enjoy it: the story was slow to build and rather obvious. I stopped reading it after I anticipated every plot point for the first 50 pages. I really wanted to like it.

Now I wonder what other books from my childhood I would view in the same way, as slow and predictable. (Yes, I read all of those books I wasn't supposed to, that were way beyond my years. It was the 70s — I think it was the law.)

I did, however, likeThe Vagina Monologues. That classic did not disappoint.

I also plan to scan local ghost lore for a little scare. It's always nice to know what's happening …

All Hallow's Read — Be Ready to Share!

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There are many reasons to like  author Neil Gaiman. All Hallow's Read is one of them.

All Hallow's Read is an excellent way to share the love of books and reading. If you love books and stories, then you love sharing those very things. (I know I do.) Neil Gaiman encourages that. In fact, he says — but wait, let me let him tell you himself.


Me, I share poetry. Every Halloween, trick-or-treaters receive not only good chocolate candy (the kind I'd eat, and usually do, until I have to give it away), but also a poem. I've shared the works of Edgar Allan Poe, Edna St. Vincent Millay. This year, I've chosen — wait. I can't tell you until Halloween.

What poems would you share for Halloween? (Note the plural. You don't have to stop at one.)

If you're looking for novels, I'd recommend one by the man himself, The Ocean at the End of the Lane, or the delightfully weird story John Dies at the End.

What are you reading for Halloween? Is it scary, gory o…

Summer Reading, Fondly Remembered

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As the days grow chillier and the sun sets sooner each night, I look back fondly on my summer reading — and, I have to say, it was pretty good. 

Below is a list of books I completed, the final book skidding in under the wire as the clock ticked down to autumn.

I did not like all of the books. In fact, I probably would not recommend Southern Gods or Poe's Children. (The former was more gory than Gothic, the latter too eclectic and scattered a vision.) I threw a couple of children's books into the mix, and more than my share of hefty tomes.

Here they are, the most recent at the top of the list.
IllusionsElla Minnow PeaUnder New YorkThe FirebirdCatwingsCatwings ReturnWonderful Alexander and the CatwingsJane on her Own: A Catwings TaleSouthern GodsUnnatural Creatures DreamfeverPoe's ChildrenThe Tarantula in My Purse and 172 Other Wild PetsSalt Sugar Fat The New Yorker Book of Cat CartoonsThe Charles Addams Mother GooseIf I StayInfernoThe Ocean at the End of the Lane Let the Gre…