A Halloween Legacy


The house was decorated,
Grinning pumpkins on the stoop,
A skeleton was hanging,
With its neck thrust through a loop.

Ugly, big, black spiders,
On the porch were hung by cords;
A plastic witch propped on a broomstick,
Was at a tilt at our front door.

We carved the pumpkin in the afternoon,
Mama held the knife;
We showed her where and how to cut,
To make sure she did it right.

But we did not light its candle,
Until just after dusk;
The night was growing spooky then,
And we felt mysterious.


We each had special costumes,
Purchased at the Five and Dime;
All fall we saved our money,
So we'd have enough in time.

We tried to outdo each other,
Which costume was most scary;
Once I wore a monster mask,
Though I dressed up like a fairy.

The neighbors laughed to see me,
When we went out to trick-or-treat;
They put extra goodies in my bag,
As special "fairy monster" sweets.

The whole neighborhood dressed up,
Trick-or-treating was great fun;
We went out together as a group,
And attack the houses one by one.


The adult neighbors joined in,
I believe they loved it, too;
They prepared the grandest treats for us,
When we rang their bell and shouted, "BOO!"

Popcorn balls and homemade fudge,
Taffy apples, orange gumdrops,
Bubble gum and chocolate bars,
Candy corn and lollipops.

Sometimes folks ran out of treats ...
Too many of us kids,
So they substituted pennies,
We were just as glad they did.

We raced throughout the neighborhood,
Small children on a quest,
As we vied with one another ...
Who got the most and best.


Then, with our booty stashed in bags,
Our little legs dragged home,
Where Mom relieved us of our bounty,
Despite our whines and groans.

Then bath time, and we hit the hay,
A tired, happy lot;
Poor Mama then was left to sort,
Through all the junk food that we got.


Those were good times ... those Halloweens,
They'll not again repeat;
I'm sorry youngsters of today,
Won't have their chance to trick-or-treat.

Too much sophistication,
Too many dangers out there now,
No more monster-masked small fairies,
Now real monsters on the prowl.

Well, we will tell our children,
How Halloween used to be,
And they'll pass it on to their kids,
Like a family legacy.

And, one hundred years from now,
(This is my firm prediction) ...
The Halloween tales that kids will hear,
Will be received as pure fiction.

~ Virginia Ellis ~
Copyright 2000

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