Monthly Haiku Corner – November

Welcome November! If hobbitses can have second breakfast, why can’t we have second Halloween? It’s no secret that I’m no longer a fan of Thanksgiving, but November is fine month to do all the things on your Fall and Halloween bucket list, that you were too busy to do during October. For me, I hold a Lord of the Rings marathon one weekend, and simply enjoy Halloween, which I always seem to miss cuz I’m too busy working.

The theme this month is Halloween Encore.

lit jack o lanterns
black cauldrons full of candy
Halloween encore

Happy Caturday – November

First caturday in November is always the first after Halloween. Most jack-o-lanterns are still lounging around people’s porches. Mine unfortunately didn’t even last the weekend. I attribute that to the fast that I bought the pumpkin early this year and warm weather we had weeks ago.

Anyways, the theme this month is Halloween Encore. So, while the pumpkins might be ready for pie, we can leave our decorations up until it’s really time for Christmas.

Halloween Cat by Andrew Pokhalchuk

Andrew Pokhalchuk

https://www.deviantart.com/an9reyart

Winners of the 4th Annual Halloween Haiku Challenge

I will directly contact winners to get mailing details. Please do not post personal information here or on social media.

Thank you so very much to everyone who participated in Halloween Haiku Challenge 2022. Choosing a winner was extra difficult this year. There were seriously fa-boo-lous haiku. I’m in awe and truly-inspired by everyone.

Happy Holidays to all!

Haiku of the Week

Happy Halloween! I can’t believe it’s already here. This season felt very short. Everything just went by so fast. Our theme this month was dystopian Halloween and I was properly scared thinking of a world with no Halloween, no trick-or-treating, no costumes, no nothing. It scared me so much, I’ve decided that November’s theme is going to a Halloween Encore. That’s right, we’re doing Halloween again in November! Don’t put those decorations away tomorrow, cuz we’re celebrating a second

haunted bomb shelter
Halloween party of one
October’s over

Poe Sundays – The Masque of the Red Death

Every Sunday in October is Poe Sunday, the day we celebrate the Master of Macabre, Edgar Allan Poe. This year, I’ll suggest the best movie adaptations of Poe’s work.

In the lingering post-pandemic era of Covid-19 and trump presidency, Roger Corman’s 1964 gothic horror triumph, The Masque of the Red Death has never seemed more relevant. Vincent Price’s sadistic portrayal of Prospero, the greedy devil-worshipping medieval ruler who tortured his peasant villagers and gave shelter to his wealthy courtiers from a plague, only to learn you can’t hide from death, is a chilling sublime performance that cemented his legacy as a horror legend.

Corman weaved two tales from Edgar Allan Poe, Masque of the Red Death and Hop-Frog to create this cult-classic and it’s one of his best. While he and screenwriters Charles Beaumont and R. Wright Campbell took several liberties with the stories, I find this adaption is the closest to any of Poe’s works.

Throwback Thursdays – Treat-or-Treating

Will trick or treating be a Halloween tradition that survives the apocalypse?

Past:

Trick-or-treating can be traced all the way back to the Celtic celebrations of Samhain, on what is now known as October 31st, the night when the dead were believed to come back to the living. Villagers disguised themselves in costumes made of animal skins to drive away evil spirits. Food and drink were left out. Bonfires were lit. Sacrifices made. Basically, the Halloween party life hasn’t changed much, well, maybe we don’t sacrifice as many bodies as we used to, but, we’re still lighting shit on fire and eating and drinking until we pass out. By the middle ages, people dressed in more elaborate costumes went door-to-door asking for treats, even performed for treats. Christianity took hold and their diehard zealots tried their best to push out pagan ceremonies of All Hallows eve, October 31, and All Hallows Day on November 1, with their own for All Saints Day on November 2. Everything only got muddled and combined. Immigrants brought their Halloween traditions, including trick-or-treating, to the USA, but by the 1920s, pranksters almost got Halloween canceled with their viciousness, horrible pranks, and acts of violence, that’s when parents started to organize community-wide events like parades, carnivals, or festivals.

Present:

Whoohoo, trick-or-treating is back, baby! According to Statista.com, Halloween spending is up to $10.6 Billion dollars in 2022, with $3.6 billion dollars being spent on costumes, and deep-pocket pet owners shelling out $710 million dollars to dress up their pooches and kitty-cats. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, they estimate about 42 million trick-or-treaters this year and 128 million dwellings offering treats, and a recent article from US News and World Report says the top three costumes were: the witch, Spiderman, and that funny inflatable dinosaur.

Future:

Mask or no mask, let’s face facts, you need people to trick-or-treat. You need people to pass out candy and you need kids, small people, to collect it. I mean, the USA couldn’t make it through a manageable pandemic without hoarding toilet paper and staying inside to stop the spread of a highly infectious deadly disease, it’s doubtful the majority of the population is going to make it through one of IET‘s 13 hypothesized apocalyptic doomsday scenarios.

The good news is, when the dust clears, I believe there will some form of a society, and probably one in need. Going door-to-door to collect food and handouts could become commonplace again, not mention to leaving “treats” to ward off evil (people) from doing good folks harm and you can be sure, as long as someone remembers October 31st is Devils night, somebody is going to be up to no good. I think trick-or-treating will most definitely survive the apocalypse.

Trick or Treat art by Raluca Iosifescu.

Tuesday Terror – Trick ‘r Treat

Trick ‘r Treat

When Michael Doughtery’s horror anthology, Trick ‘r Treat, was released in 2007, it seemed like Legendary Pictures and Warner Bros didn’t quite know what to do with the picture. After a round of festivals, the movie ended up direct-to-video, destined to die a quiet death. Well, horror fans who had seen the film, raved about it. They said it was best Halloween movie since, well, Halloween, and the good word that Trick ‘Treat was an amazing movie spread quickly. No one loves the dead coming back to life quite like the horror community.

Despite not getting a proper theatrical release, Trick ‘Treat amassed a cult following on par with the big franchise films like Halloween and Friday the 13th. In fact, Trick ‘r Treat’s Sam, the cute little mascot with a killer attitude, enforcing the rules of Halloween, is now an official horror icon with best -selling merchandise and hot collectibles of his own, after just one movie.

No one really knows why Trick ‘r Treat got the cold shoulder, some say it was bad early reviews, some say it was the violence towards children, which was still pretty taboo in 2007, yet, others blame the fact that it was an anthology, which historically don’t perform well at box office. It no longer matters. Many fans, including yours truly, consider this mandatory annual viewing every Halloween.

Haiku of the week

Monday Macabre is all about the scares during the October, but this year, we’re tapping into the psychological fear of dystopian Halloween horror.

Humans wear the scariest masks. Their desperate power grabs will not only destroy our beloved holiday, but civilized society along with it.

scary masks of death
nuclear Halloween
trick or treat no more

Poe Sundays – Extraordinary Tales

Every Sunday in October is Poe Sunday, the day we celebrate the Master of Macabre, Edgar Allan Poe. This year, I’ll suggest the best movie adaptations of Poe’s work.

Images from

Raul Garcia writes and directs this dark animated anthology of Edgar Allan Poe’s most beloved gothic tales, featuring both new voiceover and original pre-recorded narration from horror’s most legendary actors and directors. It’s colorful surrealist animation and perfectly ghastly for Poe lovers to watch on Halloween night.