When I was still inside my mother,
who at that point was ready to pop
the doctor told her that I would be
born on Halloween.
Scared to death at the superstition
behind it she ate spiced peppers by
the pound and walked our Brittany
dog Spike up,
and down the lopsided sidewalks
(each panel of cement had been
obstructed by the fat roots of the oak trees
that had survived the
creation of the neighborhood
which my parents had always
referred to as the 'ghetto')
I was two days shy of the doctor's prophecy.
My childhood was littered with 'Halloween'
themed birthday parties where goggling
children got to wear their costumes early and
eat as much candy as they wanted to without having
to maneuver the treacherous sidewalks to beg for it.
Last Halloween when I had barely
grown accustomed to my new
'twenty-year-old' skin I sat on
the fuzzy stairs in
a sweatshirt and listened to the rain -
each time the doorbell rang I
gave handfuls of wrapped chocolate
to each kid and laughed
at each Spiderman, Batman, or Ballerina
costume I saw.
"Happy Halloween" I called out
before closing the door.
Sometimes I wish I really had been
born on this night - that way, there'd
be no excuse for