There is something magical about an eerie autumns night...
The air is crisp and cold, ghostly cold! The moon shines it's silvery light on the world below, casting strange shadows across the October landscape. You pause to listen, hearing only the sound of the autumn leaves as the tumble to the ground. Out of the corner of your eye something moves, your heart quickens..."What was that?!!"
Such is the magic of Halloween, that mystical time of year when the ghouls and goblins of your imagination can run free. It's a holiday rooted in ancient pagan rituals, transformed into a celebration of childhood and imagination, a time for everyone to be childlike again.
For me, I've always had strong memories of Halloween from my childhood. The vibrant and slightly sinister decorations that would adorn our home at that time always sparked my imagination. One was a large, jointed, cardboard skeleton that would grace our living room wall, we also had a cardboard witch with the most sinister smile! We had various cut outs of Jack-o-lanterns that we would tape up on the windows, the graphics were so sharp and detailed, stark images in black and orange. I remember the joy of creating Halloween decorations in school, bright orange pumpkin headed creatures with crinkly black arms and legs...oh the joys of construction paper, safety scissors and paste!!
The carving of the jack-o-lantern is a yearly ritual that cannot be neglected!! I dare say I haven't missed a carving for as long as I can remember. Even as a young eligible bachelor, carving a pumpkin for my own enjoyment was a secret indulgence of mine. You can't celebrate Halloween without a jack-o-lantern!!! The smell of the freshly cut pumpkin, the feel of it's inner goo...it's the stuff of memory! You would then simply light the candle, turn off all the lights, and bask in it's hallowed, orange glow.
There are so many fond memories of this ghostly season, memories of watching your children go trick or treating for the first time, of seeing through them what having a real excitement for life is all about.
I created the characters pictured above as decorations for the outside of our home, some of them are over twelve years old, but they are still going strong today. My wife told me I should write a story about them way back then, and so I did, it was called "The Scarecrows Halloween". The story centers around a forgotten scarecrow who, now get this...comes to life on Halloween night!! Okay, not real original, but it's a time honored story line in children's literature and by God I was a gonna use it! The main focus of the story though was that the scarecrow and all the decorations of Halloween who came to life on that magical night, realized that they needed to live for that moment, because by morning the magic would be over and they would go back to being lifeless again. "The time is quickly fleeting! The time to live is now!" That was their battle cry, their mantra so to speak, so they partied like nobodies business until dawn. That's when the Halloween spirits left them and they returned to their lifeless forms, but for that one shining moment, they were truly alive.
I guess that was the message I tried to convey in this story, that the time to live is now. And that's the beauty of this Halloween season, to run with your imagination and experience the wonderment of life as a child again...
"For the time is quickly fleeting!!! The time to live is now!!!"
Happy Halloween everybody...and don't try to steal my idea, I've already copyrighted it!!!! hee hee hee!!!!