Passion Writ in Blood (For Tourmaline’s Halloween Prompt)


Passion Writ in Blood

The barker at the Carnival was handsome, dark and winning.
One hand signaled passersby, the other hand was spinning
round and round a roulette wheel covered with glassware jars
around them, painted pentagrams of circles around stars.

“Throw a penny in the jar and win your ticket in.
A Mephistophelian experience—a masquerade of sin.
An excruciating onslaught of abominable sights.
Scenes of hair-raising evil and abnormal delights.”

He pitched a hall of horrors with carriages to carry
all the thrill-seekers who might freeze in fear or tarry
too long before each spectacle of blood-curdling fright
set up to fill the need for fear this All Hallows’ night.

One maiden threw her penny and he drew her in with charm,
folding a gentle prodding hand around her virginal arm.
“My adorable mortal darling, please heed well my advice.
The hawks of evil here are set to feed on you like mice.

Get ready for their onslaught—the excruciating shock
of these All Hallows’ creatures who closely watch the clock
as its hands sweep close to midnight and that hour that decrees
that all the creatures of the night may frolic as they please.

A blood-letting bonanza, a nerve-wracking display
will unleash as midnight calls us to the fray.
So climb into my carriage to begin the eerie trip
that will take you through the fun house. I will keep you in my grip.
See these shadowy images careening through my globe?
they say they see your fortune flashing here beneath my robe.

The dagger that I carry seeks a home in thee,
but I have you in my power. I know you will not flee.
You scurry across the meadow with my shadow far above.
I swoop at thee, my pretty, my quarry and my love.

Some passion’s writ in flowers and some passion’s writ in blood.
I feel your life flow out from you and toward me like a flood.
I’ll drink it like the sweetest wine. With it I’ll take thy soul.
To keep it with me always will be my evening’s goal.

Life is a wicked carnival, my dear, now can you see?
When you threw your penny in the jar, the prize you won was me.”


For Tourmaline’s Halloween Challenge: Blood Image from the public domain. This poem, written by me, has been formerly published with a different name.

15 thoughts on “Passion Writ in Blood (For Tourmaline’s Halloween Prompt)

  1. Marilyn Armstrong

    It sounds like “Something Wicked This Way Comes.” The creepy circus setting. It’s one of the only “horror” novels I ever read and that was because I didn’t know it was a horror story or I probably wouldn’t have read it.

    “Life is a wicked carnival, my dear, now can you see?
    When you threw your penny in the jar, the prize you won was me.”

    Two perfect lines of poetry!


    1. lifelessons Post author

      It was good, though. (Something Wicked This Way Comes, I mean.) I met Ray Bradbury at the premiere of the movie when we both went outside at intermission to have a cigarette. Actually met him twice. the other time at the Santa Barbara Writer’s conference.



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