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Hallowe’en

by Joel Benton (1896)

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