First Things - Religion and Public Life Donate to First Things
Login forgot password? | register Close

On Halloween we shouted “Trick or Treat”
And held out plastic pumpkins for our loot.
We’d say our thank-you’s nicely and we’d scoot
To neighbors’ houses farther down the street.
November 1 we would be off from school;
We’d sit in heavy sweaters hearing Mass
For all the saintly dead who earned their pass
To Paradise, Jerusalem the jewel. Now
All Souls’ Day I linger late in bed;
November winds torment the weary trees.
I listen to them groan. My obsequies
Are haunted by my much beloved dead.
November mirrors everyone who grieves,
But Easter will return with April’s leaves.