The brick walls in the alley Bounced the sound around Echoes – The bullet was a .357 magnum It released from a Double action silver plated Colt Python Revolver A custom bullet Pure silver – It spiraled through the air Chased by flames and smoke Fading into nothing As the bullet advanced Glistening with moonlight The full moon so bright Illuminating the alley To look like day – The beast’s breath steamed From the cold air Out from its snarling mouth It turned to see The silver bullet approach No time to move – The bullet spiraled into Fur and muscle No pain at first Then the burning of Hot metal on skin The burning radiating out – As gunshot echoes dispersed They were followed by A howl or a scream The beast fell back Clutching its furry chest With a thud – The fur shrank away Revealing a pale man Steam rising from his face He looked at the blood On his hand and chest – He cracked with laughter The laughs ricocheting Through the alley Then it stopped As fast as it started The steam evaporated
Today is not only Halloween but also National Magic Day and a part of National Magic Week. This holiday recognizes magicians and the performance art of stage and street magic. This includes escapology along with large stage productions or someone making a coin appear behind your ear. One of the most famous magicians in history was Harry Houdini with his daring escapes. He also performed stage magic. Visit the Houdini Museum in Scranton, PA. The Society of American Magicians sponsors National Magic Day. It started in 1938 as Houdini Day after they received permission from Mrs. Houdini. Houdini was born March 24, 1874 and died October 31, 1926.
I have dabbled in magic. With an education in theatre and entertainment, I enjoy watching performances and determining how tricks were accomplished. I prefer up close magic. This is often seen from street performers. These aren’t big productions just people skilled with a deck of cards or coins. I enjoy this kind of magic because it can be performed anywhere without extra preparation. I still know a couple of card tricks and maybe one day I’ll study more and become a better performer. For now, I’ll just enjoy the magic when I see it.
The modern Halloween we are all familiar with is a combination of celebrations for the Gaelic Festival Samhain and the Catholic celebrations of All Saint’s Day and All Soul’s Day. Samhain marked the end of the harvest and end of Summer and the beginning of the “darker half” of the year. It was believed that the boundaries between this world and the Otherworld were more easily crossed on this day. This meant the spirits or faeries could travel to our world. It was also believed that spirits of lost relatives would visit, and feasts were had in their remembrance.
Part of the festival involved people going door to door in costumes or disguises reciting versus in exchange for food. The disguises were intended to either appear as spirits or hide from spirits who crossed over to this world. Bonfires, rituals, and games were a big part of the festival as well. Neopagans and Wiccans now celebrate Samhain as a religious holiday. Samhain is part of the annual cycle of seasonal festivals called The Wheel of the Year. It is seen as a festival of darkness which is balanced at the opposite point of the wheel by the festival of Beltane, which is celebrated as a festival of light and fertility on May 1.
Here in Tucson, AZ we have the annual All Soul’s Procession celebrating the family members people have lost. However you celebrate; whether it’s remembering you lost family members, posing as a spirit and collecting offering from others, or enjoying a bonfire with friends, stay safe and have a blessed Samhain.