Fantastic Friday: My Tenth Halloween

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. There’s just something about the crispness of the air adding a chill to everything that makes being inside that much more cozy. And yet, growing up in Connecticut, Halloween was still mild enough that being outdoors for extended periods of time wasn’t impossible.

One of my favorite places to be was underneath the treehouse my dad built for me, swinging into piles of leaves. I took that account and fictionalized it a bit to capture the nostalgia of my memories. Hope you enjoy!

My Tenth Halloween

Val Muller

Fuzzy sweatshirt, just a bit too big
Because I still have growing to do.
Daddy’s jean jacket on top.
Later, it will smell like the smoke
Climbing from Ms. Hunter’s chimney.
Pumpkins stand guard on neighboring porches,
Watching my cheeks flush in the cool autumn air.

I warm by raking leaves taller than myself.
Then, grasping the rope hanging from the tree,
I swing—and sing—Geronimo!—
Landing in the pile, soaking up the sweet scent
Of decaying leaves that dot my hair like glitter.

Then, tissue paper ghosts swing from the pines
In the front yard, glaring at the pumpkins,
Daring them to see who is scariest.
When darkness falls, I hike to the basement,
Excavating layers of years,
Exploring boxes from before my time
To find the perfect costume.
And then, dressed as a disco alien from Mars,
I creep into the living room and sneak a handful
Of Mom’s candy corn just minutes before dinner.