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Poem Sampler

Halloween Poems

Spooky, scary, and fun poems that will make your hair curl.

If you dare, feast your eyes and ears upon this selection of poems, articles, and audio clips designed to give goose bumps and curdle the blood. Thomas Moore, Edgar Allan Poe, and Christina Rossetti tell rhyming tales perfect for chilling spines around the campfire. Shakespeare’s singing charmers from Macbeth and Sexton’s “lonely thing, twelve-fingered, out of mind” are some of poetry’s most infamous witches. We’ll never look at tree branches with an innocent eye again, thanks to Paul Laurence Dunbar and Louise Glück; Adelaide Crapsey and Mary Karr ensure the same for darkened windows. Michael Collier and Michael Waters mischievously depict the gender play and genial debauchery of costumes, while W.S. Di Piero and Carl Sandburg warn us that Halloween is a day when real danger might look fake, and vice versa. We get a peek into the demons and spirits of other cultures via Annie Finch and Rae Armantrout: whether you say ghost, genie, or djinn, the tingle in the spine is universal. 

 

POEMS

Djinn” by Rae Armantrout

All Souls” by Michael Collier

To the Dead in the Graveyard Underneath My Window” by Adelaide Crapsey

The Haunted Oak” by Paul Laurence Dunbar

All Hallows' Eve” by Dorothea Tanning

Samhain” by Annie Finch

All Hallows” by Louise Glück

Field of Skulls” by Mary Karr

A Rhyme for Halloween” by Maurice Kilwein Guevera

A Ballad: The Lake of the Dismal Swamp” by Thomas Moore

To -- -- --. Ulalume: A Ballad” by Edgar Allan Poe

Goblin Market” by Christina Rossetti

Theme in Yellow” by Carl Sandburg

Her Kind” by Anne Sexton

Song of the Witches” by William Shakespeare

 

ARTICLES

Poems Can Be Creepy” by Susan Hutton
Halloween poetry for the classroom.

Ghost Hunting with the Dead Poets Society of America” by Kathleen Rooney
Is dying the best thing that ever happened to poetry?

Nevermoreland” by Abigail Deutsch
In Baltimore, Edgar Allan Poe gets the funerals he deserves.

 

BLOG POSTS

Happy Halloween, Happy Birthday, John Keats” by A.E. Stallings

A Halloween Poem: Strange Are the Products” by Forrest Gander

Ghosts in Charlotte Smith’s Elegiac Sonnets” by Javier Huerta

Wednesday Shout Out” by Rigoberto González

 

POEM GUIDES

Aimee Nezhukumatathil on Linda Pastan’s “The Deathwatch Beetle”
Pastan captures the sound of mortality while echoing Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart.”

Jeremy Axelrod on Thomas Hardy’s “The Shadow on the Stone”
After the poet lost his wife, he found his voice.

 

AUDIO

Scary Movies” by Kim Addonizio

There She Is” by Linda Gregg

The Pumpkin Tree” by Robert Wrigley

  • Becca Klaver is the author of the poetry collection LA Liminal (Kore Press, 2010) and the chapbook Inside a Red Corvette: A 90s Mix Tape (greying ghost press, 2009). A founding editor of the feminist poetry press Switchback Books, she holds an MFA in Poetry from Columbia College Chicago and...

Poem Sampler

Halloween Poems

Spooky, scary, and fun poems that will make your hair curl.
  • Becca Klaver is the author of the poetry collection LA Liminal (Kore Press, 2010) and the chapbook Inside a Red Corvette: A 90s Mix Tape (greying ghost press, 2009). A founding editor of the feminist poetry press Switchback Books, she holds an MFA in Poetry from Columbia College Chicago and...

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