Conversations with a Glowing Head; You are Afraid of What you Run From

Conversations with a Glowing Head;

You are Afraid of What you Run From


First, cut a hole in the crown and

remove the top circle of skull.

Reach in and scoop out the fleshy pulp, the seeds,

until the rind of orange bone is eggshell thin;

with your knife, cut out two wide eyes and

inside place a candle;

the hollow features glow and

the head is silhouetted;

the scent of singed pumpkin.


Sit and talk with your head-hunting trophy,

the mystery of why you run from the

ghosts, the witches, and the

half-human, half-animal creatures;

jump into that mystery as if it is a

sea and you are a diver;

become surrounded by its ghastly anemones and

skeletal, bottom-dwelling fish.


See how you swim from Death,

even though Her salt is all around you, and

you can never evade Her.


The orange glow of your gourd nods sympathetically.

Continue, it seems to beckon with a

flicker of its eyes.


But to continue, you must stop, and the dark water




and the cold brine dissolves you until

you are nothing but seaweed and shrimp,

and then smaller and more insignificant,

grains of sand, bacteria.


The Head, its mouth askance,

takes a turn; it

tells you of the threshing,

where the pitchfork lofts the seeds and

the husks are like butterflies;

with bare feet the grain is trod,

and the devil is a farmer and

not a devil at all.

She takes those heavy kernels and

gives them a proper burial in the loam. And,

once the sun remerges from her watery grave,

vines and grasses will be coaxed from seeds,

and seeds will be coaxed from flowers;

scions to be threshed again

come late autumn.


Speaking of seeds, says the Head,

take care to plant the wet and stringy

orange matter that was my brain, my womb.

Otherwise who will you talk to

next October?


~Rachel Teferet, 10/31/11

A weird and Halloween inspired poem; hope you enjoyed! 🙂 Rachel



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