–to light a candle is to cast a shadow
–Ursula K. LeGuin

Hallowe’en came and went, its parodies of terror
grinning from windows and wandering the streets.

Once, all restless souls sought offerings or explanation.
And what is the answer to that most dreadful

question of all? As the sun came loose
from the mountains,  a woman of dark grass

sprang up below me, her soles touching mine,
a halo of dew around her head–

icon of darkness, reversal of flesh,
shade of animated clay.

Every saint drags a ghost, and demons
spring from the hands of god.

On a front step a boy in pajamas stood puffing frost
and slapping dirt from his sneakers

while an old yellow dog rolled on a dry bone,
stood and considered, rolled again.


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