Aphelion Issue 291, Volume 28
February 2024
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The Feast of Samhain

by Terry Lowenstein

Ancient gnarled oaks
stand as silent sentinels
in the pastoral hills and valley
that shelter bones of souls old
when the country was young.

Time has nibbled away
at their gravestones,
so that little remains
to identify who these were.

Here and there a date,
a name, and sometimes
an epithet.

But the wind remembers
what the stones have forgot

It waits to speak their names
until the moon is full
and mist has shrouded the vale.

Waits for the "time which is no time"
when the veil between two worlds opens.

Then the wind calls, a low moan
that wakes the sleeping ghosts
and invites them to dance.

It is the feast of Samhain.
And druids on wings of
dragons fly in to join the frolic.

Fairies and elves
from the Lands of the Sidhe
emerge to celebrate as well.

They feast on milk and cakes
dance as witches chant
and candles are lit.

They celebrate until nighttide ends
and the sun rises.
Then they return to earthen beds,
hidden copse, forgotten vales.

Guarded once more by the oaks
that stand at their side.
And by the wind that sings
of days past and times forgotten.

© 2003, 2007 Terry Lowenstein

Terry Lowenstein is a poet and freelance writer who lives in North Carolina with her husband, two daughters and two cats-Dickens and Emerson. Her day job is writing magazine and newspaper articles that include personal essays, travel articles and book reviews. A well published writer her work appears in anthologies, journals, magazines and newspapers throughout the United States and internationally.

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