Hallowe'en

Joel Benton
Pixie, kobold, elf, and sprite
All are on their rounds to-night,—
   In the wan moon’s silver ray
   Thrives their helter-skelter play.
 
Fond of cellar, barn, or stack
True unto the almanac,
   They present to credulous eyes
   Strange hobgoblin mysteries.
 
Cabbage-stumps—straws wet with dew—
Apple-skins, and chestnuts too,
   And a mirror for some lass
   Show what wonders come to pass.
 
Doors they move, and gates they hide
Mischiefs that on moonbeams ride
   Are their deeds,—and, by their spells,
   Love records its oracles.
 
Don’t we all, of long ago
By the ruddy fireplace glow,
   In the kitchen and the hall,
   Those queer, coof-like pranks recall?
 
Every shadows were they then—
But to-night they come again;
   Were we once more but sixteen
   Precious would be Hallowe’en.