I have been praying for an idea to submit to SMM 2017 Halloween Writing Contest, and today I found the perfect subject, Jack O’ Lantern, who’s sometimes called, Stingy Jack. Utilizing the style of my previous monster poems, I started retelling this classic story. Here it is, so far:
Trick or treat the children giggling say,
and as trickster I made my hateful way.
Deceiver, my epitaph would have read
had anyone cared to know I was dead.
My infamy spread from heaven to hell,
and Satan himself wanted to dispel
the myth I’d outfox the father of lies;
so, in drunken travels, to my surprise,
happening upon a corpse in a ditch,
I witnessed its animate smile, which
chilled me sober seeing that dreadful sight.
It was then I knew I would die that night.
The Devil arose from his lounging state,
and, walking by my side, spoke of my fate.
Reaching crossroads—here an apple tree grew—
I devised plans to avoid this just due.
“Let me taste earth’s ripened growth,” pleaded I,
“for from trees you’ve oft encouraged men try
what’s forbidden, so feasting make me yours.”
At this that serpent shinnied on all fours
up that twisted trunk to grasp Adam’s sin.
With my carving knife, I marred the tree’s skin.
Using quick strokes I rendered a crude cross,
it was then the Devil sensed his true loss.
“Want you not this succulent food?” he asked
holding out the blood red morsel I’d tasked
him to fetch and so end this stomach’s fast.
Succumbing to laughter, I said at last,
“Keep your cursed gifts, I care not for such fruit,
much do I prefer the sweet taste of roots,”
and producing turnip did take a bite,
and, walking on, forsook him to his plight.
But then his forked tongue did utter this plea,
“I’d have a gift for one, who’d set me free,
that never would I take him down to Hell.
No more fearing damnation he’d live well.”
These YouTube videos helped me come up with the idea. #SwampFarts