Love brings her home

Skeleton woman

Image : Pixabay


She ne’er did love me better than when she died.


The priest had gone, the black backed beetle taking his spell book, the vial of magic potion that was to shield my Mary’s passing to the Otherworld. He left the smell of incense and pudding and fear, scurrying back to his plump little wife and her baked apple cheeks, leaving me to witness the final breaths of my own dear one.

There were no plump blushes in our marriage bed that night. All fat had been worn from Mary, as if the fever was a living thing that had crawled beneath her skin, feasting on the layers laid down by every Harvest Home and Twelfth Night cake. There was nothing left of her I’d known, that merry, scolding, worrisome woman. One last look she gave before those yellowed lids sealed forever.

And that was Love.

And this it is that brings her back. Out of the cold, cloying ground, clawing through rotted wood, through tree roots, cuffing away sleeping larvae. From the graveyard she comes, past the graves of mother, sister, our own lost babes, shadowing the path she trod the day we wed, beneath the black limbed yews and their shining, bloody berries. Through the village, past thatch and tile and folk she called neighbour who bolt their shutters against her coming, whispering incantations to keep her bony fingers from their doors.

Tis not them she seeks.

I listen for the slip and drag of her feet on the path, the broken china ting of her fleshless heels on stone. I throw wide the door, inhale the scent of falling leaves, the smell of summer dying.

‘Welcome wife,’ I say as she comes home.


Happy Haloween All – may your life be filled with Treats and devoid of Tricks



Halloween trailer: Season of plastic fangs and pumpkin gloop

Image: Pixabay

Image: Pixabay

Oh, my loves, it’s nearly that time of year again. You know the one I mean.

The supermarket shelves are heaving with enough black polyester lace to bring a gang of Girl Guides out in hives (What’s the collective noun for Girl Guides anyway? A pod? A shriek? A toadstool?). Plastic fangs and tridents litter the aisles. Pumpkins, cobwebs, false fingernails, automated skeletons … Every shop looks like a garage sale at that nice Mr and Mrs Dracula’s house.

In truth, the most terrifying thing is the amount of sugar on sale. Honestly, how can dentists be amongst the most depressed folk on the planet, when we keep eating this crap and throwing money at them to fix the ensuing problems?

All of this adds up to? No, not a Tory Party Conference, but


However, everything I’ve mentioned above, the commercial, tacky side of Halloween isn’t the best bit.

No, the best bits are the scary stories, the myths, the legends, the feeling that at this time of year, the web between our world and the next might be a tiny bit thinner, that we really should be staying home and hiding under the covers.

To celebrate, all my posts between the 25th and 31st of October will bring you stories, music, film, TV and anything else I spot that might give you the creeps and stop you from sleeping soundly in your beds.

You have been warned. Mwoo-hah-hah-hah! 

This season of events is inspired by the wonderful work of Walt Walker at Waltbox, whose inspiring October posts have made me so envious, I want to get in on the terrifying action. Here’s to you, maestro.