Saturday, October 20, 2012

Poplar Trees Turned Spooky on Halloween

Running alongside and circling behind our grandparents' farmhouse was a cinder driveway. It made for a great race track until going so fast on your bike you couldn't slow down in time to take the curve and you'd find yourself crashing into the field or our grandmother's peony bushes. To this day I still have cinders in my knees.

Lining the other side of the driveway were tall poplar trees. They were mighty. Proudly they stood through the rain and snow. And when the wind blew, their leaves sang a most amazing song that remains my favorite of all the needles and leaves singing when the wind pushed its way through them. While pine trees seemed to hum, those poplar trees sang a ghoulish, rustling tune and no other night was more ghoulish than Halloween as that wind seemed to orchestrate those leaves into the spookiest, creepiest, gut-wrenching, fearful, eerie, whaling scream that made us run through the fields splintered in streaks of moonlight-trick or treating at lightning speed-pushed by a fear of ghosts and goblins and witches with long, black finger nails and noses with green warts and scraggly hair with evil black cats perched on their brooms and creatures with giant teeth and fangs and wings swooping-all rushing forth and chasing us-about to grab us and take us up and into those evil-filled poplar trees where I was certain we'd disappear forever-candy and all.

Later after miraculously making it back home-with candy counted and sorted into categories of bubble gum and lollipops and tootsie rolls and candy bars and popcorn balls and little bags of goodies it would be time for bed. Lying there, with the poplars still howling their ghoulish cry and the witches still cackling and creatures still swooping and the moon seeping its fingers into my room, I'd find myself shaking in fear. Pulling the blankets up and around I'd listen to those rustling leaves and soon they'd lull me into sleep as they kept howling and screaching on the spookiest, most fun-filled night of the year.

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