Thought for the day-Oct 31st BOO!
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Thought for the day-Oct 31st BOO!

katlaughing 31 Oct 99 - 12:46 AM
katlaughing 31 Oct 99 - 09:26 AM
katlaughing 31 Oct 99 - 09:28 AM
wildlone 31 Oct 99 - 09:50 AM
poet 31 Oct 99 - 10:02 AM
catspaw49 31 Oct 99 - 10:19 AM
katlaughing 31 Oct 99 - 11:20 AM
katlaughing 31 Oct 99 - 11:41 AM
darkriver 01 Nov 99 - 12:09 AM
Lonesome EJ 01 Nov 99 - 01:32 AM
DonMeixner 02 Nov 99 - 12:02 AM
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Subject: Thought for the day-Oct 31st BOO!
From: katlaughing
Date: 31 Oct 99 - 12:46 AM

Dear Mudders,

Halloween is my very favourite holiday and sacred time. I want to share some special finds for this day. Montague Rhodes James, was in my opinion, the greatest ghost story writer ever. He was by profession an antiquarian in England, and drew ideas from his studies to write many of his chilling tales of terror. What follows is an excerpt from his story, A Neighbours Landmark:

but instead images came to me of dusty beams and creeping spiders and savage owls up in the tower, and forgotten graves and their ugly contents below, and of flying Time and all it had taken out of my life. And just then into my left ear -- close as if lips had been put within an inch of my head -- the frightful scream came thrilling again.
- M. R. James, Casting the Runes and Other Ghost Stories

The next two are from an old treasure book I found at a library sale, Hallowe'en, compiled and edited by Robert Haven Schauffler, published in 1933 by Dodd, Mead, and Co., part of the Our American Holidays series:

Robert Herrick:The Bell-Man

From noise of Scare-fires rest ye free,
From Murders -- Benedicite
From all mischances, that may fright
Your pleasing slumbers in the night:
Mercie secure you all, and keep
The Goblin from ye, while ye sleep.
Past one aclock, and almost two,
My Masters all, Good day to you!

Ben Jonson: Robin Goodfellow

...From hag-bred Merlin's time have I
Thus nightly revelled to and fro;
And for my pranks men call me by
The name of Robin Goodfellow.
Fiends, ghosts, and sprites,
Who haunt the nightes,
The hags and goblins do me know;
And beldames old
My feates have told;
So Vale, Vale; ho, ho ho!

And finally, from the Spiral Dance: A Rebirth of the Ancient Religion of the Great Goddess by Starhawk:

This is the night when the veil is thin that divides the worlds. It is the New Year in the time of the year's death, when the harvest is gathered and the fields lay fallow. For tonight the King of the Waning Year has sailed over the sunless sea that is the womb of the Mother, and steps ashore on the Shining Isle, the luminous world egg, becoming the seed of his own rebirth. The gates of life and death are opened; the Sun Child is conceived; the dead walk, and to the living is revealed the Mystery: that every ending is but a new beginning.



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Subject: RE: Thought for the day-Oct 31st BOO!
From: katlaughing
Date: 31 Oct 99 - 09:26 AM

Q: What happened to the guy who couldn't keep up payments to his exorcist?
A: He was repossessed.

Q. How did the ghost patch his sheet?
A. With a pumpkin patch.

Q: What did the little ghost have in his rock collection?
A: Tombstones.

Q: What do baby ghosts wear on Halloween?
A: White Pillowcases.

Q. What do you get when you goose a ghost?
A. A handful of sheet!

Q. Why can't the boy ghost have babies?
A. Because he has a hollow-weenie!

Q. What's a haunted chicken?
A. A poultry-geist.

Q. Why did the ghost go into the bar?
A. For the boos.

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Subject: RE: Thought for the day-Oct 31st BOO!
From: katlaughing
Date: 31 Oct 99 - 09:28 AM

There is nothing funny about Halloween. This sarcastic festival reflects, rather, an infernal demand for revenge by children on the adult world.

Jean Baudrillard (b. 1929), French semiologist. America, "Astral America" (1986; tr. 1988).

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Subject: RE: Thought for the day-Oct 31st BOO!
From: wildlone
Date: 31 Oct 99 - 09:50 AM

Yer be zome words on a Dorset witch.
Written by William Barnes.

There's thik wold hag,Moll Brown look zee, jus'past!
I wish the ugly sly wold witch
Would tumble over into ditch;
Iwoulden pull her out not very vast.
No,no.I don't think she's a bit belied,
No, she's a witch, aye, Mollys evil-eyed.
Vor I do know o' many a-withere'n blight
A-cast on vo'k by Molly's muttered spite;brShe did woone time,a dreadvul deal o' harm
To Farmer Gruff's vo'k,down at Lower Farm.
Vor there , woone day, they happened to offend her,
An'not a little to their sorrow,
Because they woulden gi'eor lend her
Zome'hat she come to bag or borrow;
An'zoo they soon began to vind
That she had gone and left behind
Her evil wish that had such pow'r, An'addle all the aggs their vowls did lay;
They coulden vetch the butter in the churn,
An'all the cheese bagan to turn
All back agean to curds an'whey;
The little pigs, a-runnen wi'the zow,
Did zicken zomehow,nobody knowed how,
An vall an'turn their snouts toward the sky.
An'only gi'e woone little grunt an'die;
An'all the little ducks an'chicken
Wer death-struck out in yard a picken
Their bits o'food, an'vell upon their head,
An'flapped their little wings an'drapped down dead.
They coulden fat the calves, they woulden thrive;
They coulden seave their lambs alive;
Their sheep were all a-coathed,or gi'ed no wool;
The hosses vell away to skin an'bwones,
An'got so weak they coulden pull
A half a peck o'stwones;
The dog got dead-alive an'drowsy,
The cat vell sick an'woulden mousy;
An'every time the vo'k went up to bed,
They wer nag-rod till they wer half dead,
They used to keep her out of house,'tis true,
A-nailen up at door a hosses'shoe'
An'I've a-heard the farmers wife did try
To dawk a needle or a pin
In drough her wold hard withered skin,
An'draw her blood, a-comen by;
But she could never vetch a drap,
For pins would ply an'needles snap
Agean her skin;an'that,in coo'se,
Did meake the hag bewitch them woo'se.

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Subject: RE: Thought for the day-Oct 31st BOO!
From: poet
Date: 31 Oct 99 - 10:02 AM

What can you expect from a day that starts with getting up in the morning?


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Subject: RE: Thought for the day-Oct 31st BOO!
From: catspaw49
Date: 31 Oct 99 - 10:19 AM

I was outside enjoying the weather this morning. Beautiful Fall morn.......But I was thinking too that in my liitle throwback town with its 12 streets and big trees that the modern world keeps encroaching on my childhood memories.

The leaf fall is probably two-thirds complete but the sun still reflects the golds of the season. The air is crisp and the morning frost leaves the ground moist and yet dry at the same time. Beggars Night was Thursday and we got our usual 400 kids. It is so much like the days when I grew up in another little town much like this one. The kids are always polite and say "Trick or Treat" AND "Thank You." Our boys really cleaned up this year. I remember saving my candy for days, being selective of what I ate and when. Forty-five years..........seems like yesterday.............

But this morning, the lady across the street brought home the changing technology and I realized what was missing. Although we still rake, she came out with her leaf blower and the whirring electric motor is not the same as that tinny, rhythmic, sound of a leaf rake. But then I realized the other missing part. Gone was the smell of my early years. The village comes along with a giant vacuum and sucks up the burning allowed in this time of environmental cleanliness. The air is crisp but I miss that aroma as I miss the smell of burning coal on a snowy winter day.

Oh well........I'm thankful for the brick streets and the safe atmosphere that Bremen provides; and for another clear Fall day. I wish that all of you could be here to share it. Hope its nice wherever you are.


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Subject: RE: Thought for the day-Oct 31st BOO!
From: katlaughing
Date: 31 Oct 99 - 11:20 AM

Spaw, out here where a person can see for miles and miles, we always knew when someone was burning leaves. First thre'd be the scent, a strong, tingling woodsy smell, tickling our noses, and then we'd glance across the horizon and say soandso must be burning leaves. In the springtime, it was burning out of the irrigation ditches to keep them hopefully clog free.

Your little town sounds so lovely; a good place to raise kids, in spite of the noisy neighbour. Rather than the city gathering the leaves, in New England, a lot of people, frugal Yanks, ya know, gather them either in bags or loose piles and tuck them up against the sides of their houses, as a natural insulation against the cold and humid winters. Some of the houses up in the Berkshires are from the 1600's, old saltboxes; it is easy, seeing them with the leaves piled high, to imagine oneself slipped back in time when a body had to use every resource available to stave off death from the long winters.

Another curious old custom which I'd never seen out West, although I am sure they must've done something like it in the high country: each little hill town, usually had a town vault near the cemetery where bodies of those who died in the winter were stored until spring thaw, when they could be buried *proper*. I am sure many a ghost story arouse from that custom.


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Subject: RE: Thought for the day-Oct 31st BOO!
From: katlaughing
Date: 31 Oct 99 - 11:41 AM

Forgot to ask, Spaw, what is Beggar's Night?

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Subject: RE: Thought for the day-Oct 31st BOO!
From: darkriver
Date: 01 Nov 99 - 12:09 AM


ah yes, the leaves' smell . . . I moved away from the New Jersey of my childhood 54 years ago, but I still remember that leafy smell. After a while on the ground it has an aroma almost like grapes that have been crushed for wine (I know that smell too, thanks to my Italian grandpa).
And you're right--it's a great loss, to no longer have that half-acrid, half-sweet smell of leafsmoke. Mebbe if we get rid of the cars we can burn leaves again?

darkriver (doug m.)

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Subject: RE: Thought for the day-Oct 31st BOO!
From: Lonesome EJ
Date: 01 Nov 99 - 01:32 AM

"..tell to me Tam Lin, she said, how came ye here to dwell
The Queen of Faeries caught me when from my horse I fell
And at the end of seven years she pays a tithe to Hell
I, so fair and full of flesh, am feared it be myself
But tonight is Hallowe'en, and the Faerie Folk ride
Those who would their trueloves win, at Mile's Cross they must hide
First there pass the horses black, and then pass the brown
But quickly run to the white steed and pull the rider down
For I shall ride the White Horse, nearest to the town
That I was an earthly knight, they give me that renown
And they shall turn me in your arms into a Newt or a Snake
But hold me tight, and fear not, and you shall love your Child
And they shall turn me in your arms to a Lion Bold
But hold me and fear not,I am your baby's father
And they shall turn me in your arms to a naked knight
Clothe me in your mantle of green and keep me out of sight
So in the middle of the night, she heard the bridle ring
She heeded what he did say, and Young Tam Lin did win
Then up-spake the Faerie Queen, an angry queen was she
Woe betide her ill-wrought face,an ill death may she die
"Had I known,Tam Lin," she said,"what this night I would see
I'd have looked him in the eye and turned him to a tree!"

-Tam Lin

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Subject: RE: Thought for the day-Oct 31st BOO!
From: DonMeixner
Date: 02 Nov 99 - 12:02 AM

When autumn was at it height and the nights were cool but along ways from the cold of November. We would rake the fall of maple leaves into the ditch on Grimes road and build fires. The banks would glow with the warmth of slow coals and not the hot flames that initial would come forth. Into the coal beds went bags of potatos to roat while we told tells of ghosts and banshees from the little Island on Cross Lake. We'd sing old songs and chase the cats and the neighbors would come and sit in the night air and just get lost in glow from the leaves. When the taters were done black on the outside and white and hot and perfect on the in we'd eat em with salt and real butter and drink 100% milk and think it could never be better or ever end.

Now of autumn nights when the weather is coming but not yet on us, I go to the garden and burn a pile of leaves in the night. The neighbors come by and we seldom talk and we take a pull of the bottle I carry against the cold. WE stand and gaze into the glow and we see children dancing just beyond the smoke and hear the songs of autumns long past.

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