A poem to close Halloween

dark-forrest

The darkness surrounds you

Walking down and an endless corridor

Should you turn round

What will you see

A mind that cuts right through you

A hand that tickles you with claws

Like those of a rabid eagle

The air is intoxicating

The relentless rhythm of footsteps

Catching up with you

As your heart races

There’s no going back

Part of a Halloween holiday  blog hop, read other articles by writers and bloggers.

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Creepy clowns, they are at it again!

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They are at it again…nowhere is exempt, the most recent attack a formal dinner at the hallowed ground of Cambridge University,  a creepy clown equipped with a machete.  Maybe this can be put down to university high jinx…

However…there has been a recent spate of people in the UK,  dressing up as clowns, jumping out and trying freak people out.  It has been dubbed “the creepy clown craze”.  The craze is not only limited to the UK, needless to say creepy clowns have been terrorizing America, clowns in at least 10 different states being sighted, some yelling at people in cars on desolate country roads, and worse besides carrying machetes and knives. Even Stephen King has had to weigh in telling the  US to ‘cool the clown hysteria’ after wave of sightings

 Horror films, must take some responsibility for this phenomenon, as they  are littered with sinister clowns, Pennywise from It, Mr Jingles, Chucky, the killer clowns from outer space  to name but a few.

This increasingly prevalent phenomenon has been fueled significantly by a Facebook page which shares photos and videos of the scary sightings. There’s even a label we can use for fear of clowns “coulrophobia”

Of course the primary function of a clown is to make an audience laugh. If we go back to the Middle Ages we discover that of the clown didn’t serve this function, they would pay heavily, meaning they would find themselves mutilated, to make their own smiles permanent. Our normal perception of smiles is usually positive, but constant smiles are unnerving . Clowns date back long before the Middle Ages, according to Dr Richard Talbot “The first recorded description of a clown was of a pygmy-type figure in Ancient Egypt, around 2000 BC”. Historically Britain’s first modern clown was Joseph Grimaldi, who in his time had a massive following, and could be deemed a real star . In the early 1800s, he is accredited with inventing  the trademark clown painted white face and red smile. The external image he projected was very different to what was going on in his own head, as he said himself “I am GRIM ALL DAY, but I make you laugh at night.”

Why is it that clowns are so unnerving?  In the world we live in, the face is one of the first things we look at. We search constantly for clues, to help us have a sense of how the other person is feeling. With clowns, that’s impossible. As Doctor Talbot puts it “There’s a technical confusion. There’s a painted face which stays static but the facial muscles are still moving underneath, so our brains can’t quite make sense of it.”  His idea mirrors an idea Sigmund Freud – the founder of psychoanalysis – called the “uncanny”. It’s when you look at something that’s recognizable but not quite right. And it makes you feel weird.

Clowns primary audience are supposed to be children. Maybe not so much these days but parents used to consider clowns for their children’s birthday parties.  However do children like clowns a survey done in 2008, by University of Sheffield, England, discovered of 250 children interviewed between the ages of four and 16 found that most of the children disliked and even feared images of clowns. A  child psychologist made the point , “Very few children like clowns. They are unfamiliar and come from a different era. They don’t look funny, they just look odd.”

Part of a Halloween holiday  blog hop, read other articles by writers and bloggers.

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A poem for Halloween

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You sent me a poisoned cake for my birthday

laced with shards of glass,

the colour of black bile

when I swallowed it whole

you laughed

and you laughed

and you laughed

You danced like a jittery shadow

Spinning a pernicious web,  you  confined me

With needles and pins you jabbed me

Till midnight came around

Then all fell silent

Part of a Halloween holiday  blog hop, read other articles by writers and bloggers.

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creepy clowns, thoughts and a poem by Giselle Marks

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I asked authors concerning  their feelings about the phenomenon of “creepy clowns”

Gina Marks replied

I have no real childhood memories of clowns good or bad. I don’t like them and am suspicious of them because you can’t see their real faces, but they do not terrify me as such. I was terrified as a toddler of a five foot tall rubber Bugs Bunny that a friend of my father’s gave me. I screamed so much they eventually gave it away. So I asked a friend who I know suffers from coulrophobia, (that is fear of clowns, lol.) for her story and combining with the news reports I wrote you this.

Scary Clowns

Performing clowns can be very funny

they caper crazily to earn their money.

The feelings of children are rather mixed,

while others with terror stand transfixed.

Now killer clowns threaten our lives

posing for pictures with sharp knives.

Do they think it is some kind of clever joke?

I fear our sense of humour has gone up in smoke.

Scary clowns, now you take special care

We’ll find you and then you best beware.

Author bio Giselle Marks

Giselle Marks is an English writer, poet and novelist, born in London, who has been writing in many forms most of her life. Currently Giselle lives in the beautiful Isle of Man. Her family is grown, contented and expanding. She spends most of her time writing.

Her book ‘The Fencing Master’s Daughter’ is receiving good reviews. Together with her fellow writer and cover artist Sarah J. Waldock, Giselle wrote and illustrated ‘Fae Tales’ an anthology of fae and mythic tales updated to modern times and intended for teenagers and adults. Both books are available. Following ‘The Fencing Master’s Daughter’ she will be releasing ‘The Purchased Peer,’ a Georgian romance at the beginning of November.  This will be followed by ‘Princess of Zenina,’ the first in the sci-fi / fantasy Zeninan Saga. She has also completed two more Regency romances, ‘The Marquis’ Mistake’ and ‘A Compromised Rake’ and the first of a Regency gypsy series, ‘Jessica’s Tale – Book One, The Gypsy Countess series,’ although she is considering alternate titles.

Other long- term projects include a possible book of her poetry. Her poems have been published in Female First and she has entered two of their contests, scoring a win and a commendation. Giselle has had short stories published in a number of anthologies.

 

@GiselleMarks1

http://ginafiserova.wix.com/gisellemarks

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7304857.Giselle_Marks

Part of a Halloween holiday  blog hop, read other articles by writers and bloggers.

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Bizarre happenings on Halloween

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When children tuck in to their Halloween candies, they might get more than they bargain for. Ronald O’Bryan had his own distorted vision of Halloween when he laced Trick or treat sweets with cyanide.

Kevin Toston a five year old also met a tragic end when he took his uncle’s heroin stash to  be sweeties. The family later tried to cover up the crime to protect the uncle, sprinkling heroin over sweeties. Drugs creep their way into Halloween sweets, a twenty three year old Mancuria  gave out packets of cocaine to children instead of sweets – despite the fact he didn’t hide it in any sweets, and police said he’d given the items “in error.”

If you get a sudden doorbell ring late into the night, think twice before you open the door.   Peter Fabiano was just about to go to bed, when the doorbell rang.  Grabbing some candy he went to accost his late night visitor,  only to find on his doorstep, not a child  enacting trick or treat, but a grown up porting a cheap mask.  On top of this the late night visitor was carrying a gun, concealed in a paper bag, pointing at his chest.  Once the late nigh visitor had slain Peter, she sped off.  The police at first were mystified by this “senseless murder” .

Peter who worked as a hairdresser was hardly the type to have enemies who would want to see to his demise.  They unearthed an ex-employee, namely Joan Rabel, aided by an anonymous caller they discovered the gun used to shoot Peter.  The locker was rented however by Goldyne Pizer,  who happened to be Ravel’s lover. Rabel twisted the mind of Pizer with stories about how Fabiano abused his wife.  It was Pizer who arrived and just about managed to fire the bullet that was to end Fabiano’s life.  In reality Rabel’s motive was to rid Betty Fabiano of her husband, because she herself was Betty Fabiano’s lover. In the consequential trial followed Rabel pleaded not guilty, and Pizer pleaded insanity.

An important part of Halloween is the decorations. It is true that Halloween has become very commercial. So imagine if you are driving in your car and see a woman hanging, the chances are you would simply deem it to be just another decoration.  Four days before Halloween in Frederica Delaware, there was a woman dangling 4.5 meters directly above the road.  When somebody realized this body was real and not some morbid decoration, the police were called to the scene. Sadly it turned out to be a 42 year old woman who took her own life.

In Ohio there was a similar occurrence, again it took a while before people dared to  verify whether they were looking at a genuine corpse.

Part of a Halloween holiday  blog hop, read other articles by writers and bloggers.

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Born with special powers

 

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Some people will have you believe babies born between midnight and 1 A. M. have the power to see ghosts. So does the seventh child of the seventh child. Further superstitions include  A baby that is born feet first will have healing abilities. Firstborn children are protected from witchcraft.

What if you were born with special powers, that you could see things others couldn’t. Imagine if you could see the dead.

Take for example Sally Cudmore, a trainee nurse who claims when she working in a special care unit, she was able to predict when someone would die. With nature of her job she was accustomed to death, but what made her job unattainable was the fact that those who died came back. Sally traces her special talent to when she was eight years old, when she began to see the spirit of a young girl. Her gift lay dormant until she began her career as a nurse and she was able interact with those from the spirit world.

She had her own warning signs when somebody was about to die, as she puts it “I knew someone was going to die when I saw red and black surrounding them and it became really upsetting.”

She claims that she was able to pass on messages to grieving relatives from their love ones.

After a point she decided to make a change of career from nurse to medium.

Ever heard of Bulgaria-born Prophetess Baba Vanga,  I came across her earlier in the year, her story is both fascinating as well as unnerving. She has been dubbed the “Nostradamus from the Balkans” and has an 85 per cent accuracy with her predictions. Some of her predictions include 9/11, the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami, the Fukushima nuclear spill and the birth of ISIS.  Scarily for me, (living in Europe) she predicts Europe as we know it will “cease to exist” by the end of 2016 following the systematic elimination of entire populations, leaving the continent “almost empty”, a “wasteland almost entirely devoid of any form of life”.

Up until the age of twelve she had led an ordinary life but following  a massive storm she mysteriously lost her eyesight.  She was missing for several days before being discovered, her eyes being covered with dirt and dust. It was during this time her great talent surfaced, that she could not only heal people but predict the future.

She even predicted Barack Obama’s election as president, saying the 44th president of the United States would be African American. Intriguingly she also stated that he would be the “last US president”. This does not look out of the question with Hillary and Donald, offering the world little hope as they spar for the presidency.

Her predictions go as far as 3797 when the world will finally die. However, human civilization will be advanced enough to move to a new star system. As to this prediction I feel she is being quite optimistic, the way things are going at the moment.

Part of a Halloween holiday  blog hop, read other articles by writers and bloggers.

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The fear of being followed, alone late at night…

woman-alone

Ever had that terrible feeling that somebody is following you? Perhaps you have caught a late night train and while you are walking home, the streets are deserted.  Suddenly you  are aware of footsteps.  You want to turn round to see who is behind you, but your growing anxiety prevents you from doing so.  You increase your pace in the hope that you can lose this unknown person who you perceive to be following your trail.  When you finally get home the relief is palpable.

In my book of short stories, Flight of Destiny,  at the end of my story called “Cast from Hell” ,  there is a similar situation to the above scenario.

The train arrived late in the evening at the station nearest my parents’ house. It was dark and deserted, and I felt truly alone. I breathed a sigh of relief and began dragging my case down the dark road to my parents’ house. Wisps of fog slowly crept in, obscuring the stars, then the moon, and finally the local scenery. A few moments later, it began to drizzle.I heard a twig break behind me, followed by the repetitive click of heels on tarmac. I didn’t immediately panic, but I recall feeling increasingly uneasy. I picked up my pace, only to hear the sound of the footsteps behind getting closer rather than more distant. I turned abruptly to try a gain a cursory look at my stalker, but the combination of darkness, fog and drizzle, made it impossible to see anything more than a foot away. I turned and further upped my pace, but my effort was frustrated by having to drag the case. The dense fog parted momentarily and turned and caught a glimpse of a person not far behind me, the face shadowy and undefined. The fog immediately re-engulfed the elusivefigure. The person appeared to be wearing a hooded cloak and riding boots, which would account for the pronounced clicking noises that eerily reverberated along the road. The footsteps behind me slowed, crunched some slushy leaves, then resumed moving at a faster pace.My sense of dignity stopped me from calling out for help, but I nonetheless discarded my luggage and ran, hampered this time by the high heels I was wearing. I couldn’t shake off my pursuer, who, to my  horror, was now almost within touching distance of me. I became aware of my pursuer’s labored breathing, and for a moment, I could swear I caught the briefest whiff of perfume. It even seemed familiar,but in my anxiety, I wasn’t able to place it. My body froze when a hand touched my shoulder, and I turned to face the grey specter in what seemed like slow motion.

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