“Halloween” by Darius M. Ratcliff, November 3, 1944



Its  Halloween

And shapes scarce seen

Are darting through the air.

The ghosts are out,

They’re all about,

They’re flitting here and there.

Along the street

With nimble feet,

A crowd of spooks I see

With laughter gay,

They’re off, away,

With whispers fraught with glee.

At twelve o’clock

A frightful knock

Comes crashing through the night,

But when I go

The cause to know

There’s not a soul in sight.

The window next

With no protest

Gives out an awesome shriek,

But when I race

And search the place,

In vain for ghosts I seek.

Sometimes they bring

Near everything

And leave it at my door:

But when I wake

I find they take

As much, and often more.

And when at last

The night is past

I gaze upon strange sights;

A rope is strung

Tree tops among,

And graced with scarlet tights.

A neighbor’s cart

Has come apart

And roost upon our shed:

Our swing is gone,

But on our lawn

There sets an ancient bed.

The village crank

Is out to spank

The kids that brought him leaves:

Some urchins bright

Just out of sight

Are laughing up their sleeves.

Its Halloween

And shapes unseen

Are flitting through the dark:

On phantom wings

Strange ghostly things

Now have their yearly lark.

The kids are out

In madcap rout

To have their yearly lark.

“What the boys did to the cow”

Image 1 retrieved from:


Image Title:  Hallowe’en. Item Physical Description: 1 postcard : col., embossed ; 8.9 x 14 cm.

 Source: Holiday postcards / Halloween; Source Description: 17 postcards : col. ; 9 x 14 cm.

Location: Mid-Manhattan Library / Picture Collection;  Catalog Call Number: PC POC – Halloween; Digital ID: 1587802; Record ID: 1065700

 Image 2 retrieved from:


Image Title:  What the boys did to the cow. Additional Name(s): Julius Bien & Co. — Publisher

Source: Holiday postcards / Halloween; Location: Mid-Manhattan Library / Picture Collection

Catalog Call Number: PC POC – Halloween; Digital ID: 1587798; Record ID: 1065698