HALLOWEEN - ALL SAINTS' DAY
Stories, Folktales, Folklore, Fairy Tales, Legends,
Myths, History, Nursery Rhymes, Fantasy & Facts


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HALLOWEEN - ALL SAINTS' DAY
Stories, Folktales, Folklore, Fairy Tales, Legends,
Myths, History, Nursery Rhymes, Fantasy & Facts


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Books about Halloween and All Saints' Day - All ages
Classroom Activities and Supplies - Halloween
Online links to stories/info - Halloween - All Saints' Day
SOS: Searching Out Stories/Info - Halloween - All Saints' Day
Advice, Comments and References from Storytellers,
Teachers and Librarians


See also:

Bare Bones Book - Halloween (105 chillers and thrillers)
http://www.story-lovers.com/barebonesstories.html

Bat stories
http://www.story-lovers.com/listsbatstories.html

Ghost stories
http://www.story-lovers.com/listsghoststories.html

Witch stories
http://www.story-lovers.com/listswitchstories.html

Vampire stories
http://www.story-lovers.com/listsvampirestories.html

Wizard stories
http://www.story-lovers.com/listswizardstories.html

 



BOOKS ABOUT HALLOWEEN AND ALL SAINTS' DAY - ALL AGES

Book titles are in blue and underlined. Click on them to find out more about the books and how to buy them.
To retell any stories, obtain permission from the copyright holder if the material is not in the public domain.
In performance, always credit your sources.
Alphabetized for your convenience with short descriptions to save you research time.

Batman: The Long Halloween by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale. (1999 - YA)
the story revolves around murders occurring on national holidays, the victims connected to Mob boss "The Roman." Dubbed "Holiday," the killer uses an untraceable handgun and leaves small trinkets at the scene. Plenty of suspects are available, but the truth is something the Dark Knight never suspected


Dancing Skeleton (The) (Aladdin Picture Books) by Cynthia DeFelice. (1986 - Ages 4-8)
Aaron Kelly is dead but not lamented. He's so ornery, in fact, that he won't stay in his coffin but comes home to haunt his widow. How she ultimately gets Aaron back into his grave makes for a funny rather tahn scary story that will delight children. Full color.


Fancy Nancy: Halloween...or Bust! by Jane O'Connor with Robin Preiss Glasser and Carolyn Bracken (illustrators). (2009 - Ages 4-8)
No one knows Fancy like Nancy
. . . and no one knows Halloween like Nancy!



Haunted Castle on Hallow's Eve (Magic Tree House, 30) by Mary Pope Osborne with Sal Murdocca (illus). (2003 - Ages 4-8)
The intrepid Jack and Annie are summoned once again to the fantasy realm of Camelot. There, Merlin the Magician tells them that the Stone of Destiny has been stolen. The answer to its disappearance lies within a haunted castle. With a young magician named Teddy, Jack and Annie take on the challenge in an adventure that takes them to new heights and places they couldn’t even imagine!


Trixie The Halloween Fairy (Rainbow Magic) by Daisy Meadows.(2009 - Ages 4-8)
BOO! It's Halloween, and Rachel and Kirsty can't wait to go trick-or-treating together. But for Jack Frost, this holiday is all about the tricks! Three magical pieces of Halloween candy are missing, and Jack Frost's goblins are to blame. If Trixie the Halloween Fairy doesn't find the candy first, the holiday could be ruined forever! What a fright! Can the girls help Trixie outwit the mischievous goblins? Or will this Halloween be spookier than ever?

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CLASSROOM ACTIVITIES AND SUPPLIES - HALLOWEEN AND ALL SAINTS' DAY

Product links are in blue and underlined. Click on them to get more stories and information.
Alphabetized with short descriptions included for your convenience and to save you research time.

Magnets - Foam Monster Craft Kits 1 Doz
These magnet craft kits let kids create funny foam monsters. These are great projects for a Halloween party or a rainy day. Monster magnets are easy to assemble and measure 4.5" to 5.5" when completed. Great party favors or classroom projects, too. Pieces are packaged for individual use. 1 dozen kits per set.

Paper Plates - Halloween "Creepy Characters" (8 3/4") - 8 cnt
Halloween "Creepy Characters" Paper Plates. Each plate measures 8 3/4" in diameter, is a thick paper plate and is very durable for all types of parties. The plates come in packs of 8.

Paper Plates - Halloween "Hide & Seek" (6 3/4") - 8 cnt
Halloween "Hide & Seek" Paper Plates. Each plate measures 6 3/4" in diameter, is a thick paper plate and is very durable for all types of parties. The plates come in packs of 8.

Party Napkins - Halloween Jack O'Lantern & Bats" 20 cnt
Each napkin measures 6 1/2" x 6 1/2" when closed.
These are 2-ply and good for all types of parties.
Contains 20 napkins.

Party Napkins - Halloween "Pumpkin Face" (6 1/2" x 6 1/2") - 20 cnt
Halloween "Pumpkin Face" Napkins. Each napkin measures 6 1/2" x 6 1/2" when closed, is 2-ply and good for all types of parties. The napkins come in packs of 20.

Party Napkins - Halloween "Treats" (6 1/2" x 6 1/2") - 16 cnt
Halloween "Treats" Napkins. Each napkin measures 6 1/2" x 6 1/2" when closed, is 2-ply and good for all types of parties. The napkins come in packs of 16.

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ONLINE LINKS TO STORIES AND INFORMATION ABOUT HALLOWEEN AND ALL SAINTS' DAY

Online links are in blue and underlined. Click on them to get more stories and information.
Story titles are in quotation marks.
To retell any stories, get permission from the copyright holder if the material is not in the public domain.
Short descriptions included for your convenience and to save you research time.

http://urbanlegends.about.com/msubdead.htm?once=true&
Ghost Stories and Death Legends from About.com.

http://tinyurl.com/mz9zqu
Halloween Sheet Music: Largest collection of antique Halloween sheet music on the web from thirteenforhalloween.com.

http://www.geocities.com/trampingground/
Devils Tramping Ground - Interactive.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halloween
Halloween from Wikipedia.

http://www.halloween.com/
The one source for all things Halloween from Halloween.com.

http://www.halloweenmovies.com/
HalloweenMovies: The official website of Michael Myers. Previews of current movies plus other links and merchandise with spooky music.

http://www.history.com/content/halloween
History of Halloween plus videos, games, around the world, haunted places from The History Channel at history.com. Excellent site.

http://tinyurl.com/m9jyrd
Videos about Halloween from Google videos and youtube.com.

http://blog.starcostumes.com/halloween-facts.html
32 Bizarre and Fascinating Facts About Halloween.

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SOS: SEARCHING OUT STORIES AND INFORMATION ABOUT HALLOWEEN AND ALL SAINTS' DAY
Advice, Comments and References from Storytellers, Teachers and Librarians
(excerpts from Storytell posts plus original research)

Book titles, movie and song titles, and online links are in blue and underlined. Click on them to get more information.
Story and song titles are in quotation marks.
To retell any stories, obtain permission from the copyright holder if the material is not in the public domain.
Posts are added chronologically as they are received by Story Lovers World.


1) Papa Joe has a WONDERFUL story called "The Ghost and the Applesauce." It's about a miser who hoards applesauce. It's has many possibilities for active telling, repeated phrases, and is just plain fun to tell. It is not scary, but has a moment when the ghost appears—and then when it is brought back to life— wonderful humor and even a lesson about misers. It may be a bit long for the 3 year olds -but 4, 5, 6 should love it -as do older folks.


2) A story called "Turn Me Over."
I think there's a version in The Ghost & I: Scary Stories for Paticipatory Telling
, edited by Jennifer Justice and Joseph Bruchac, or maybe it was in Joining In: An Anthology of Audience Participation Stories and How to Tell Them, edited by Teresa Miller, Norma J. Livo and Anne Pellowski.
Bones:

A man is walking home, decides to take a shortcut through a cemetery (why do they always do that?). Here's a voice moaning, turn me over. Runs the rest of the way home. When he gets home and tells his family, they laugh at him, say he imagined it. So next night, he decides to go through the cemetery again, to prove to his family he isn't afraid. Hears the voice again and runs. Doesn't mention it to his family this time. Third night, back to the cemetery, determined to find out what it is, because he thinks someone is tricking him. Follows the voice to the deepest darkest part of the cemetery, finds a little building there--a mausoleum. Opens the door (creak), sees two red eyes glowing at him. Stares back, and as his eyes adjust, realizes that he's looking at two glowing red coals. Stares longer, and sees there's a grate over the coals. stares longer, and sees a hamburger on the grate, moaning turn me over! He picks up the spatula and turns over the hamburger and it says, thanks you. Lots of audience participation, where they do the moan-y voice saying "Turn me over." I vary the degree of spookiness depending on the age of the kids, and it works with ages 5 and up to 12, or for family audiences. A lot of fun to tell!


3) Look at Margaret Read Mac Donald's book
When the Lights Go Out: Twenty Scary Tales to Tell.
Lots of good stories there with audience participation.


4) Alvin Schwartz has a more basic version in Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark 25th Anniversary Edition: Collected from American Folklore (Scary Stories)(c.1981). The story is called "Aaron Kelly's Bones" there.


5) Try a version of "Ghostilocks and the Three Witches."
Ghostilocks breaks into witch's house and rides/breaks all their brooms. When witches come home and find her, they find that the last broom has turned her into a toad and she hops away Or make up a version with the youngsters using Goldilocks and Three Bears variation.


6) Funny but slightly spooky stories that kids love: "The Ghost with One Black Eye" (with permission of Priscilla Howe). You can hear Priscilla tell this story at:
http://www.storyteller.net/tellers/phowe


7) WILEY AND THE HAIRY MAN (READY-TO-READ) (Ready-to-Read) retold by Molly Bang is a good story to tell at Halloween time. It's not exactly a scary story, but it is suspenseful. Molly Bang has a good tellable version that I think is still in print.
Also available:
Wiley and the Hairy Man retold by Judy Sierra.
Wiley and the Hairy Man retold by Jack Stokes and Robert Byrd.
Wiley and the hairy man retold by Alice Molter.
Wiley and the Hairy Man retold by Susan Zeder.


8) If the kids are older, I really love telling Duppy Bird, a Jamaican folktale found in Dan Yashinsky's collection Ghostwise: A Book of Midnight Stories. Most of the time kids join in on the song/chant that the bird sings.


9) I like to teach kids a spider scream at spooky stories. Keep very quiet, but slowly wriggle one hand in a spider-like fashion up the other hand, arm, shoulder, neck, then SCREAM when it jumps on your face. I learned it from a scout group.


10) "The Ghost of Mabel's Gable" (available in picture book version as The Boo Baby Girl Meets the Ghost of Mable's Gable by Jim May). Silly rhymes and baby hero -almost a long joke.


11) WILEY AND THE HAIRY MAN (READY-TO-READ) (Ready-to-Read) by Molly Bang has a good tellable version of this African American folktale. Wiley is afraid of the a creature in the woodland called the Hairy Man. When he goes on errand for his mother, Wiley learns a lot about courage.


12) "The Golden Arm" ..the Folk Tale and Its Literary Use By Mark Twain and Joel C. Harris.


13) "Tailypo" found in SCARY STORIES (4 SCARY SHORT STORIES) (NOT A CD!) (AUDIOTAPE CASSETTE AUDIOBOOK) 1991 ATLAS VIDEO INC. told by Alice McGill, Jon Spelman, Joe Bruchac and Olga Loya.


14) "Red Ruby Lips" (this is a funny one) in Ready-To-Tell Tales (American Storytelling) by Holt and Mooney. It is called "The Girl with the Mischievous Smile." It's spooky and qualifies as a 'jump' tale. It also relieves tension if things get a little too scary.There's a version with notes for telling:
http://folktale.net/gotcha.html


15) "The Red Velvet Ribbon" found in
Favorite Scary Stories of American Children: For Grades K-3 by Meg Wesson (for the older crowd).


16) "Mary Culhaine" (older as well).


17) "La Llorona" (older crowd).


18) "The Belly Button Monster" (for the wee ones).


19) "Black Bubble Gum" and/or "The Affair at 7 Rue de M" -- Steinbeck did a black bubblegum story that can be found at the Storytelling Wiki. But there are other versions of the story of a boy who found some black gum that kept crawling back in his mouth and chewing itself.


20) "Spearfinger."


21) "Iron John," otherwise called either "Iron Hans" or "The Man of Iron." It is a tale from the Grimm Brothers.
Entire text of the Grimms is available on the web in quite a few places too, eg.
http://www-2.cs.cmu.edu/~spok/grimmtmp/
and you can find the text of Iron John at
http://www-2.cs.cmu.edu/~spok/grimmtmp/104.txt
If you have access to a tale type index you can find variants from other sources if you look up Type 502, The Wild Man as a Helper. Note that the story isn't the same one as Iron Henry / Iron Heinrich, though there are some similarities.


22) Sort of JOKE:
There were two men hoeing turnips in a field.
One says to the other.
"I don't believe in them there ghosts."
"Don't 'ee ?" said the other.
And then he vanished.


23)
"Golden Arm" version many times. The golden arm is not taken for food, as in the "Big Toe and Liver" versions. It is stolen out of greed, because it is made of gold. One version has a woman who loses her arm in an accident. She is very upset, but her husband comforts her by having a beautiful golden arm made to replace it. She loves it, but after a while the husband comes to resent the arm as a waste of money. Upon her death bed, the wife requests to be buried with her beloved arm, and the husband grants her final wish. But then, he starts thinking of that gold going to waste, and he digs up the arm. And so the story continues with the usual refrain "Whoooooose got my golden arm?" "Whoose got my golden arm?" YOU DO!!!


24) "Dead Man's Liver" on the Jennings and Ponder website is one that usually works for me for this age. Recommend doing it as the child-teller, in order to allow for full narrator relish of the icky parts.



25) A poem is called "Countdown.
"
There are ten ghosts in the pantry,
There are nine upon the stairs,
There are eight ghostes in the attic,
There are seven on the chairs,
There are six within the kitchen,
There are five along the hall,
There are four upon the ceiling,
There are three upon the wall,
There are two ghosts on the carpet,
Doing things that ghosts will do,
There is one ghost right behind me who is oh so quiet.........BOO!


26) Another favorite collection of participation stories is The Ghost & I: Scary Stories for Participatory Telling, edited by Jennifer Justice.


27) "The Story of a Pumpkin, Feebaugh" by Fran Stallings is a wonderful tale to get the whole crowd of all ages involved (and I have all the pigs, houses, trees and cows move out of the way for the boy who is running from the giant pumpkin only after hw yells "PLEASE!" And as he runs off he shouts over his shoulder "Thank you!". When Feegbah, the giant pumpkin arrives close behind, I ask the crowd "Do you think Feegbah stopped?""No!" "Do you think Feegbah said please?" "No!" You're right he squashed them, flat as... (people yell out various flat objects here until I finally tell them how flat they ended up).


28) Jack Prelutsky poems from his collection The Headless Horseman Rides Tonight is filled with scary poems for kids, very good for kicking off a storytime,such as The Dance of the Thirteen Skeletons by Jack Prelutsky from Nightmares: Poems to Trouble Your Sleep. It's a bit long, but great lines, "They shake their flimsy shoulders and they flex their fleshless knees."


29) For preschoolers:
(a) Pumpkin, pumpkin,
Round and fat
Turned into a jack-o-lantern
Just like that ( clap on "that")
(b) A little old lady with a tall pointed hat
Knocked at my door with a "rat-a-tat-tat"
I peeked through the window to see who was there
And off on her broomstick, she flew into the air!


30) A poem by Ogden Nash's "The Adventures of Isabel" - the verse where she meets "a wicked old witch." It describes the witch, who doesn't faze Isabel, who simply "turned the wich into milk and drank her." It's easy to dramatize, short and funny. And can be used as a cut-and-tell.


31) From The Kingfisher Treasury of Spooky Stories (The Kingfisher Treasury of Stories), chosen by Jane Olliver, an Indian tale retold by John Paton called Ghost Soup. Use a small bag where I tuck a small mirror. The hero (a barber) scares away a ghost by claiming to have a bag of ghosts. When the ghost peers into the bag, he see his reflection and thinks the bag is full of ghosts. I have the children make ghost sounds with me before each time the ghost speaks. Very big success story! (Although I changed the wife to be not so naggy. They together agree he must leave to be able to do his share while she remains home taking care of her business and the family.)

32) The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything by Linda Williams 1986 -- unafraid old lady deals with pumpkin head & other spooky objects following her thru the woods


33) "The Squeaky Door."


34) "Sara and the Old, Old Woman."



35) Silly short ones found in anthologies like Schwartz and Scary Stories American Children Love Rap, Rap; The Viper; It Floats; Turn Me Over; etc.


36) "Peanuts' Halloween Carols" or other parodies such as "Dracula Is Coming to Town," "We Three Ghouls of Halloween Are," "TheThirteen Days of Halloween," etc.


37) "The Boy Who Didn't Know How to Shiver."
He agrees to stay in a haunted house all night. As he cooks his slab of bacon, he hears a voice telling him "Loooook out belooooow!" and pieces of a body fall one by one.


38) JOKE: Two men were walking home after a Halloween party and decided to take a shortcut through the cemetery just for laughs. Right in the middle of the cemetery they were startled by a tap-tap-tapping noise coming from the misty shadows. Trembling with fear, they found an old man with a hammer and chisel, chipping away at one of the headstones. "Holy cow, Mister," one of them said after catching his breath, "You scared us half to death -- we thought you were a ghost! What are you doing working here so late at night?" "Those fools!" the old man grumbled. "They misspelled my name!"

39) Another joke or "shaggy bat" story:
Late, late one night, a bloody vampire bat slowly flew back into his cave. He was the last one in that night. Wearily, he hung himself up for a good day's sleep. But that smell of fresh blood (you know how wonderful that can be) filled the cave and woke up all the other vampire bats. They sniffed and sniffed and tracked down the source of the smell. "The blood. The BLOOD! Tell us where you found the blood!" "No, no," replied the bloody bat. "Just leave me alone. I ache all over. All I want to do is try to get some sleep." "No, NO!", the others cried. "You MUST show us where you found the blood. We won't leave you alone until you do!" "Oh, all right, " said the bloody bat. Slowly the bloody bat flew out of the cave, followed by a vast swarm of vampire bats. They flew up and over the hill. On the way down, the bloody bat called out, "Do you see that tree down there, by the river?" "Yes, YES, we see the tree!" The bloody bat sighed. "Well, I didn't."


40) Jane Yolen's collection of Favorite Folktales from Around the World (Pantheon Fairy Tale and Folklore Library). She has a story about a house that is haunted by a woman who is still alive and dreaming in another place of being in the house.


41) Try We're Going on a Ghost Hunt, which is a take off on "Going on a Bear Hunt."


42) Diane Goode 1994, great collection of traditional tales, poems, songs--not just Halloween.


43) Jeb Scarecrow's Pumpkin Patch (Sandpiper). Jana Dillon 1992. A kid comes up with a wonderful plan to scare the crows away from his pumpkin patch--


44) The Biggest Pumpkin Ever by Steven Kroll 1984. Two mice, without letting each other know, helped a pumpkin grow into the biggest pumpkin ever.


45) Too Many Pumpkins by Linda White. (1996) Old woman who hates pumpkins finds herself with a full crop to deliver--jack-o-lanterns.


46) ) The wonderful Chuck Larkin stories found at
http://www.Chucklarkin.com


47) I always use the "Golden Arm" for third grade up. Boo Baby Girl is great for any elementary audience. "Ruby Red Lips" and "Bony Fingers" can be put into a participation story where you have kids being the little girl, the witch, the door (opens and shuts each time she goes to get her parents) the parents, etc. This adds a little something to the story so that even if they have heard it before, it becomes new. Also check out Alvin Schwartz Scary Stories Treasury; Three Books to Chill Your Bones: Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark/ More Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark/ Scary Stories 3: More Tales to Chill Your Bones series. You can find all kinds of material.


48) If you want to try a similar story to "Red, Red Lips," try this one:
http://folktale.net/gorilla.html


49) The Moonlit Road website:
http://www.themoonlitroad.com/



50) This is an Irish tale called "The Dream House" and you can find it in Jane Yolen's collection Favorite Folktales from Around the World (Pantheon Fairy Tale and Folklore Library) on p. 432.


51) Basically, my friend Terry who lives in Denver and loves ghostly things wanted to buy a house. Not a fancy new one, but an beautiful old one. Got himself a realtor, Mr. Brown, and together they looked at his entire list. None suited Terry. "Don't you have any more?" "Well, there is one more. But you wouldn't want it." "Why not?" "Well, they say it's haunted." Of course, that delighted Terry and he insisted they look it over. At this point you can add what details you wish. Somewhere along the inspection of the two story house Terry realized Mr. Brown was superstitious, hesitant to go in, always motioned for Terry to go first. In the kitchen there was a narrow door, a back staircase. Mr. B. insisted they not go up there, rather go up the front stairs. Checked out the rooms, came to the back bedroom, it was nearly dark--not much light, Terry insisted that Mr. B. go in first. Then insisted they go down the back stairs, Mr. B. first. He slooooowly opened the door, slooowly stepped into the dark, (Give it your best scream here) raced across the bedroom, down the hall, down the stairs, out to the car. Terry knows Mr. B. isn't about to come back, but he has to find out what scared him. Goes into the dark space---bursts out laughing. Someone long ago had hung a full-length mirror at the top of the staircase.


52) Jim May's picture book The Boo Baby Girl Meets the Ghost of Mable's Gable is lots of fun to tell and is well received by different ages.


53) This is a new story which was posted last week on the Moonlit Road site. A good one for spooky stories. Passing the tale along. You can sign up for their free newsletter and they will e-mail you whenever a new story is posted.
The Moonlit Road - "The Promise" - Page 1
http://www.themoonlitroad.com/



54) I love Tog the Ribber or Granny's Tale by Paul Coltman as an accompaniment to The Gobble-Uns 'll Git You Ef You Don't Watch Out! - James Whitcomb Riley's Little Orphant Annie: James Whitcomb Riley's Little Orphant Annie. It's proper spooky, and crammed with jangled words. Very nice for adults who think they've heard it ALL! Probably out of print, but most libraries (and librarians) have a copy or two stashed about somewhere.

Added comment: The work "tog" is based on the children's story book Tog the Ribber or Granny's Tale by Paul Coltman - a horror story that tells the tale of "your grandmother" as a child being terrorised across the countryside by the ghost of Tog. The language of this story id similar to that of the famous poem Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll in that it takes the text of the story and makes slight changes to the words by either using a different vowel or consonant. The result is a nonsense text which, although it is not verbally correct, can still be understood by the reader. The concept behind this piece was to create a musical storyboard using ambient samples, loops and the text of the story. The result is a programmatic work consisting of atmospheric, metric and melodic sections. This is the instrumental remix. (music)
http://www29.gu.edu.au/gallery/2743/p2/p2remix.html

Added comment:
GILLIAN McCLURE is the author/illustrator of twelve children's books and has also illustrated books by other writers. She was Highly Commended in the Kate Greenaway Award and the 1985 Smarties Prize for her illustrations for Tog the Ribber or Granny's Tale, whose text was by her father Paul Coltman. Father and daughter also collaborated on "Tinker Jim" in 1992, which was shortlisted for the Smarties Prize. Gillian has three sons and lives in Cambridge.

55) Here's the "Frankenstein Ditty"
To the tune of My Darling Clementine refrain:
Oh my darling, oh my darling, oh my darling Frankenstein
You are lost and gone forever,
Dreadful sorry, Frankenstein.
I was working with some test tubes
in my laboratory fine
Then one day, I broke my glasses
And created Frankenstein. (refrain)
He was handsome, he was charming
As his head, I screwed on tight
His teeth were sharp and they were pearly
And his eyes popped out at night (refrain)
Then Dracula came to help me
But, from him I had to part
He cooked my steak to tough for dinner
So I drove it through his heart(refrain)
Then the Wolfman came to help me
I said, what's that in your mouth?
He said........fangs...........I said your welcome!!
And he still is heading south(refrain)
Oh Frankenstein, helped in the kitchen
We were mixing up a cake
But, he fell in to the electric mixer
And got mixed in by mistake(refrain)
Cooking nicely in the oven
Oh that cake it came out fine
Told my friends those lumps were raisons
But those lumps were........Frankenstein!(refrain)

Beverly suggested omitting the verse with the steak through the heart for the wee little ones and I omitted it and Wolfman too, since I work more with little ones, and that's the way I learned it.


56) For Seniors: Other stories I used were a variety of sort of scary and fun. "Mary Culhane" was the most serious and scary, "Ghost With One Blackeye" for fun, Papa Joe's "Miser and Applesauce" appropriate for all ages although most people use with kids, and "Talking Skulls" (not usually Halloween-lesson story about talking getting you in trouble.)


57) For Seniors: "Wicked Jack"
(or John). It's great fun to tell, and has a good Halloween connection. I know a lot of storytellers think it's been told to death, but that's because we tellers hear it--a lot of audiences have never heard it, and it's a great story. Even here in the mountains of WV, I find that 99% of my audiences have never heard of Wicked Jack.


58) For Seniors: You might want to try "Wait Till Martin Comes" or "Black Bubble Gum"
or "Jack and the Haunted House" sans any jumps. Some fall stories are "How the Leaves Change Color," etc. It's a difficult group because you don't want to talk down to them with cutesy Halloween stories and yet I avoid any story that has graves or relies on death. I also avoid any stories that stereotypes our seniors...dirty old man, crazy old woman, nasty old man, etc.


59) That time of year is fast approaching and I just received a request for Halloween stories. There will most likely be children from the age of 4 to 14. However, the directors email specified, "We want to have some non-scary Halloween Tales - Fierce and Friendly or Sweet and Spicy." Here are some tales I have told in the past (see below) with success and I would like your suggestions for new stories for the younger set in case there are some repeat customers.

"We're Going on a Ghost Hunt"
"The Little Old Lady Who Wasn't Afraid of Anything"
"The Ghost, the Miser and the Applesauce"
"The Golden Arm"
"Red Ruby Lips"
"Black Bubble Gum"
"The Thing on the Stairs"
"Bring Me The Light
"

FOR OLDER CHILDREN
"Wiley and the Hairy Man"
"Meg Wesson"
"Mary Culhaine"
"Tailypo"
"The Witch Woman"
"Urashima Taro"
"The Piper's Revenge"



60) Here are a few more ideas to add to your great list!
From Annette Harrison's Easy-To-Tell Stories for Young Children - check out the story, Bobbie the Boo. It's a fun participation story about a boy in school that is "overcome" with the spirit of scaring people by saying boo. You could say he was in the Halloween spirit - to make it even better for Halloween. Of course, at the end he learns that no one likes to be scared. I have told this story to 3-7 year old children.

The Ghost & I: Scary Stories for Participatory Telling, edited by Jennifer Justice - Check out Fran's Stalling's "The Story of the Pumpkin." It's another participatory story that would fit in well. Great for ages 5-8.


61) Rose sent this out last year, I made the ghosts in different color flannel and I thought it went very well.Joey was a little ghost who was ready to go out trick-or-treating. (Put a white ghost figure on the flannel board) He just loved Halloween because it was the one night of the year that children weren't afraid of him. They just thought he was another kid dressed in a ghost costume. Joey had just picked up his trick or treat bag and was about to head out the door when his mom said, "Joey, you go into the kitchen and get something healthy to eat before you leave. Do you remember last year. You didn't eat before you left the house and you were so hungry while you were out trick or treating that you had eaten all of your candy before you got home and you had a belly ache for three days. Joey was an obediant ghost and said "OK , Mom I'll go and get some
healthy food." He went into the kitchen and opened the refridgerator door (It was black you know and it squeaked) MAKE A SPOOKY SQUEAKY NOISE LIKE A SQUEAKY DOOR. He looked in and found a nice banana and ate it and do you know what happened? He turned yellow. He always turned the color of what ever he ate (here you take down the white ghost figure from the flannel board and put up and identical one except made out of yellow flannel) Still hungry he looked for something else to eat and found some peanut butter. So he had a spoonful of that (replace the yellow ghost figure with a brown one) YOU KEEP ON GOING THROUGH AS MANY FOODS AS YOU WANT CHANGING GHOST FIGURES EACH TIME Well, Joey was finally getting full but he had a problem He wasn't white.He couldn't go trick-or-treating looking like that. Now what do you think he found in the fridge that would make him turn white again? (some kids say milk some say cottage cheese accept what ever makes sense) You're right! So after he ate that he turned back into his regular ghost color (Put original white ghost back up) And do you know what? He had the best Halloween ever because this year he didn't get sick from eating too much candy.


62) I don't expect to get through all of these in one event. For those who don't look for the Other Thread (which I'll title "The Scary Season Approacheth"), I chose stories that have some historical or artistic value rather than because they're bloody.

"The Honest Winemerchant" (Virginia)
"The Death of Young Andrew" (Scotland)
"Cruel Sister" (England)
"The Moss-Green Princess" (Swazi)
"When They Came Home" (Virginia Civil War family story)
"The Girl who Escaped a Troll" (Norway)
"Dracula" (Romania)
"The Homecoming of Odysseus" (Homer, Greece)
"Sop Doll" (Jack Tale)
"A Ghost at Lamb's Creek Church" (local to my neighborhood)
"A Ghost at Aquia Church" (local to my neighborhood)
Why the Wolf Didn't Eat the Rabbits" (Uncle Remus)
"Thor Becomes a Bride" (Norway)
"A Grimm Cinderella" (Germany)
"The Ghost I Didn't See" (personal story)
"Twa Corbies" (Scotland)
"Crow and Octopus" (Tlingit)
"Tam Lin" (Scotland)
"Godfather Death" (Germany)
"The Cask of Amontillado" (Edgar Allan Poe)



63) I think that it is interesting that Scary Ghost Stories used to be a Christmas event. Ever hear the verse from Andy Williams' Best Time of the Year "There will be Scary Ghost Stories and Tales of the Glories of Christmas long time ago." If you want a good Holiday Story, look for Dickens' Christmas story of goblins who stole a sexton by Charles Dickens. It was written years before A Christmas Carol, but it has the exact same storyline. Written as a scary story for the Christmas Holidays.
Response: I went to google to look up the story but couldn't locate it based on your title. I did however find this story by typing in charles dickens +sexton +goblin. Is this the same story?
Charles Dickens: The Pickwick Papers (Penguin Classics), Chapter XXIX
http://www.classicreader.com/read.php/sid.1/bookid.1291/sec.29/

Response:

Yes, the story was part of the The Pickwick Papers (Penguin Classics).


64) We've used the "Dancing Skeleton," "Jack and the Sally Bally," "The Beast w/1000 Teeth, Kibungo," "Old One Eye," "The Man Who Wasn't Afraid of Anything," and the "Nungwama."


65) A fun activity to do when the children need to move a bi
t & get some of the wiggles out is to do Dry Bones. This can be said like a story or sung like a song.- or a combo of both I use a large (five foot) glow in the dark skeleton attached to my tripod and storyboard.
"Dry Bones":
The head bone's connected to the neck bone,
The neck bone's connected to shoulder bone,
The shoulder bone's connected to the back bone,
The back bone's connected to the hip bone,
The hip bone's connected thigh bone,
and so on - can add leg, ankle, foot & toes, too
Refrain:
Them bones, them bones, them dry bones,
Them bones, them bones, them dry bones,
Them bones, them bones, them dry bones,
Them bones come a tumblin' down.
The children can stand and point along as you point to the parts of the skeleton (or yourself). When doing the refrain keep your hands and arms going up and down. I've done this with mostly the younger listeners, family groups and on occasion older kids if I think they are in the mood.

66) There is the story of the The Vanishing Pumpkin (Sandcastle Books) by Tony Johnston that I take the basic storyline from and do my own things with---it works well for families and younger kids.


67) What about the thing at the window with the red, red lips and the long, long fingernails? It's in Stories To Play With, Volume 3, easy folktales for beginning tellers, retold by Fran Stallings, edited by Hiroko Fujita. If you play up the blood on the bat, and where it might have come from, this might be considered a scary 2 minute story, originally posted by someone (Tim Sheppard ?) on Storytell:

Late, late one night, a bloody vampire bat slowly flew back into his cave. He was the last one in that night. Wearily, he hung himself up for a good day's sleep. But that wonderful smell of fresh blood filled the cave, just like the smell of popcorn fills your home, and it woke up all the other vampire bats. They sniffed and sniffed and tracked down the source of the smell.
"The blood. The BLOOD! Tell us where you found the blood!"
"No, no," moaned the Bloody Bat. "Just leave me alone. I ache all over. All I want to do is try to get some sleep."
"No, NO!", the others cried. "You MUST show us where you found the blood. We won't leave you alone until you do!"
"Oh, all right, " whined the Bloody Bat. Slowly the Bloody Bat flew out of the cave, followed by a vast swarm of vampire bats. They flew up and over the hill.
On the way down the hill, the Bloody Bat called out, "Do you see that tree down there, by the river?"
"Yes, YES, we see the tree!"
The Bloody Bat sighed. "Well, I didn't."


68) "Teeny Tiny Woman"
http://www.sacred-texts.com/neu/eng/eft/eft13.htm

Richard-in-Germany tells the bloody vampire story definitively on his CD. Maybe he'd send you an MP3.


69) A great one to stand and do motions to is The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything Book and CD (Share a Story) (it's available in paperback).

Also, you can use the chant:
Old Bloody Bones is a-comin', a-comin'.
Old Bloody Bones is a-comin' on down.

This is can be done with a group holding hands in a circle and going clockwise or counterclockwise during the chant. (There's a melody, but,I can't sing it over the Internet) Or, in your case, have the children stand and put their arms up in the air and slowly bring them way down until they are bent over at the waist at the end of the first line with head and arms down and then the second. Then you are the example and tell a short, short tale (about three or four lines) like this: "I woke up in the middle of the night and I was hungry so I decided to go downstairs to the kitchen for a snack. I looked on the table and there was the peanut butter jar rolling around. I looked in the jar and there I saw..."(gesture to audience who says with you) "OLD BLOODY BONES!" Then everyone does the chant again and you ask if anyone else has an Old Bloody Bones story. And so on...
AND NOW...THE PIECE DE RESISTANCE!

This is for anyone who wants the idea...
Years ago I found a Hallmark booklet of Peanuts "Halloween Carols" and I have used many of them ever since. I've even added other parodies of carols myself. I have offered some of them on this list serve in the past. My favorite is the Thirteen Days of Halloween (they used 12) and I took some liberties with the categories (they had "ghouls a-groaning" for one). You need to be a little bit artistic. I have used magic markers to create a picture for each day on large manilla tag sheets (12" X 18"). I have the name on the back of each at the top which helps keep them in order. Here they are:
13 cauldrons bubbling
12 bats a-flying
11 masks a-leering
10 spiders spinning
9 ghosts a-booing
8 monsters shrieking
7 pumpkins glowing
6 goblins gobbling
5 scary spooks
4 skeletons
3 black cats
2 trick-or-treaters
and a hoot owl in an oak tree

I have used these in my Halloween programs small and large for many years. You get 13 kids to come up front and hand each a sheet in order from 1 to 13, left to right, with the front facing them. Explain that when their number is called they are to turn the sheet around for the audience to see the picture.Then each time the audience and you get to their part they hold the picture up and then lower it while the others are named. Picture a bigger and bigger wave as more are added in the song. I often use this a the finale, and they usually love it.

Response:

When I tell The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything Book and CD (Share a Story, the kids are standing up and doing hand motions and the sound each item of clothes makes. During the first part, I point to one child's shoes, saying "a pair of red sneakers just like those." During the second part, I point to another child's pants, etc., and the third part yet another child's shirt, each time using the color of the item. The kids must imagine the hat, gloves and pumpkin head.


70) Of course I will recommend my Halloween booklet. Tried and true stories for all ages that work well and are of the tradition. here is the link:
http://www.geocities.com/artcars/samie.html
Also included are the Irish Samhain or halloween customs including the Halloween cross and food recipes......
The stories work very very well....I have used them on this age group. Especially tha cat ones.

71) Last year someone submitted a cute Halloween story that i used. A little ghost wants to go out trick or treating because no one will recognize he's a real ghost.But his mother reminds him "Last year you didn't eat before you went, and you got all that candy and you were sick for a week because you ATE IT ALL in one night. If you want to go out, you have to eat a healthy snack".So Joey went to the fridge and pulled out a banana to eat, and he turned yellow. (I have cut out several colors of felt, and the white ghost gets lifted up and the yellow one takes its place.)That was good. Now I think I'll have some chocolate cookies and he turns brown. That was good too. Now I think I'll have some orange juice to drink and Joey turns orange. You get the idea, add the foods that will make him turn color. Hey, I can't go out like this.Ghosts have to be white. What can I eat that will turn me white?Ask the audience for suggstions. I got some really good ones, marshmellows, milk, popcorn, vanilla ice cream etc. Anyway, it was fun to tell.


72) At my library we handed out the boots, shirt, pants etc. ahead of time to various kids. They bring them up as they're mentioned, we had the kid with the pumpkin stand on a chair and the rest group in front to make the complete figure at the end. One of the librarians was the little old lady and one told the story.


73) Here are the words to a Halloween song written by me and a colleague Leslie Jarvis (I promised if she helped I'd always give her 'credit') "The Witch came Back" to the tune of the camp song My Aunt Came Back. The motions are kind of obvious. For those of you who don't know the camp song, keep adding motions with each verse till you are attempting to do them all at once.
The witch came back from from her grave plot
and brought to me a big black pot (stir)
...Merlin's Cave
And brought to me this bat to wave.
from a haunted house
a wiggling mouse (hold at arm's length)
in puff of smoke
some poison oak (scratch)
the the Dismal swamp
some bugs to stomp
with howls and shrieks
some trick-or-treats (chew)
from a magic shop
and said this song has got to Stop!



74) Which reminds me of a story I heard in a Catholic chat room.... This particular church decided that it wouldn't recognize Halloween at their school. [Allow me to editorialize. Destroying Halloween isn't a fundamental Catholic concern, but there are some among us that want to out stupid the Protestants.] That particular year they decided to have a come-as-a-saint costume party on November 1, All Saints Day. The problem with dressing up as a saint is that there aren't that many variations. Dress as a nun or dress in a cassock tied with a rope and you've just about exhausted the possibilities. Frankly, you've seen one Frances of Assisi, you've seen them all and just as many Martin de Porres. One child came in the standard hermit's costume, but with a helium balloon draped in cheesecloth tied by a string to his back. He came as St. Kevin. St. Kevin is an Irish saint who was a contemporary and friend of St. Brigid. Conrad could probably tell you more. The story goes that Kevin wanted to be a hermit. This is a man who when a bird laid an egg in his hand and remained motionless until the egg hatched, so we are not talking about one of our more rational saints. Every time Kevin found a cave, a pilgrim would bother him for prayer or blessings. It's a small island. Finally, Kevin found a cave that he liked and just as he was settling for some major hermiting, when a pilgrim stoped in to pass the time of day. Kevin was so incensed that he tossed the pilgrim off the mountain to his death. The unnamed pilgrim is said to have haunted the good saint until his death. I don't know what the moral to the story is or why this is cited as an example of St. Kevin's holiness. Now if I were going to a costume party as a saint, I would go as St. Lucy. The same Santa Lucia of the Italian song and the Swedish crown of candles. St. Lucy was a beautiful virgin ('natch) who was lusted after by an unsuitable non-Christian ('natch) after she already dedicated herself to the nunnery (triple 'natch; it's the story of many a female saint). To avoid this unwanted sexual encounter, our Lucy plucked out her own eyes. A bit overboard, but there's no stopping a saint. The very next day, God restored her sight with two brand new eyes. Her family saw the error of their ways and sent her off to a convent. I would think that she gave her family the creeping ughs. She is depicted on holy cards as carrying a small plate with two eyes sitting in the middle. What always bothered me is that the eyes on the plate are always brown while the eyes in here head are always blue. You can see why I can't be against Halloween. There are saint stories that are far gorier than anything heard around a campfire. If they give you any problem with ghosts & witches, I can fill you in on church approved stories of saints that will scare children witless. Like, St. Dymphna's tale of incest & fratricide...


75) Then there is the saint who cut off her breasts. Many people think the tray she is holding has bread not breasts on it!

Response:
St Agatha, martyred under Decius (c251) in Sicily. Patron saint of bell-founders - because of the shapes of those upturned breasts??? For a fancy-dress saint with a difference, why not consider St Wilgefortis, also known as St Uncumber? According to the myth, she was a queen's daughter who wished to stay single but was besieged by lovers (not unusual in saints' lives); to be uncumbered from them, she prayed that she might grow a beard. The prayer was granted and the lovers duly deserted the now bearded lady (how fickle) - however, one of them was so enraged that he had her crucified. [Costume suitable for either sex, methinks]


76) St. Kevin is an Irish saint who was a contemporary and friend of St. Brigid. Conrad could probably tell you more. The story goes that Kevin wanted to be a hermit. This is a man who when a bird laid an egg in his hand and remained motionless until the egg hatched, so we are not talking about one of our more rational saints. Every time Kevin found a cave, a pilgrim would bother him for prayer or blessings. It's a small island. Finally, Kevin found a cave that he liked and just as he was settling for some major hermiting, when a pilgrim stoped in to pass the time of day. Kevin was so incensed that he tossed the pilgrim off the mountain to his death. The unnamed pilgrim is said to have haunted the good saint until his death. I don't know what the moral to the story is or why this is cited as an example of St. Kevin's holiness.

Response:
The version I've heard is that the victim was a woman who was trying to seduce the saint, even climbing into his cave above Glendalough, and being pushed over the edge into one of the lakes. The location is a beautiful valley and well-worth visiting.

Richard Marsh of this list tells the story on his "Saints and Gore and Fairy Lore" tape.


77) For a fancy-dress saint with a difference, why not consider St Wilgefortis, also known as St Uncumber?

Response:

St. Uncumber is one of the saints mentioned in one of Robertson Davies' great novels where the narrator is an authority


78) There's the story of "Bobbie the Boo" from Easy-To-Tell Stories for Young Children by Annette Harrison. It had to do with a young boy, Bobbie, who is in kindergarten. Bobbie loved to scare people, his teachers and friends. In the end he is scared by his friends to teach him a lesson, now he knows what it feels like when someone sneaks up and says boo!


79) Could it be "Boo!" That title is sometimes given to the jump story (well, more of a "shudder" story, really). Granny Sue posted this version of it recently:
"Lock up well when we leave," her parents said. "I will," she promised. She couldn't wait til they left--the house would be all hers! They left. She carefully locked the door behind them, then checked all other window and door locks. She pulled the curtains and sat in her favorite chair to read. When it got late, she got up, stretched, checked all the locks again, turned out the lights. Then she went upstairs, checked all the window locks to be sure they were secure, pulled the curtains. She went into her bedroom, checked the window locks one more time, twitched the curtains tightly together, undressed and put on her nightgown. She turned down the bedcovers, closed and locked her bedroom door, and turned out the light. It was just as she pulled the covers over her that she heard a voice say "Oh good. Now no one else can get in here. We're all alone." You can, of course, stretch this out to be a longer tale, but it tells very well in this short, tight version.


80) I found this in my computer when I was looking for alphabet soup. Don't know who originally sent it,I have it misfiled so I'm glad I found it.

"You're A Ghost and You Know It" (to the tune of "If You're Happy and You Know It")
If you're a ghost and you know it,
Just say Boo
If you're a ghost and you know it,
Just Say BOO
If you're a ghost and you know it and you really want to show it...
If you're a ghost and you know it just say BOO
If you're a black cat and you know it
Just say Meow
If you're a black cat and you know it
Just say Meow
If you're a black cat and you know it
And you really want to show it,
If you're a black cat and you know it Just say Meow
If you're a skeleton and you know it,
Wiggle your bones (shake your body)
If you're a skeleton and you know it,
Wiggle your bones
If you're a skeleton and you know it,
And you really want to show it
If you're a skeleton and you know it,
Wiggle your bones.
If you love Halloween and you know it
Do all three (all 3 actions in order of appearance)
If you love Halloween and you know it
Do all three
If you love Halloween and you know it
And you really want to show it,
If you love Halloween and you know it
Do all three

"Great Pumpkin is Coming to Town" (Sung to the tune of "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town")
Oh, you'd better not shreik
You'd better not groan
You'd better not howl
You'd better not moan
Great Pumpkin is coming to town.
He's making a list Of folks that he meets
Who deserves tricks
And who deserves treats
Great Pumpkin in coming to town.
He's searching every pumpkin patch
Haunted houses far and near
To see if you've been spreading gloom
Or bringing lots of cheer.
Oh, you'd better not shreik
You'd better not groan
You'd better not howl
You'd better not moan
Great Pumpkin is coming to town.
On the first day of Halloween (tune:12 Days of Christmas)
On the first day of Halloween my true love gave to me
an owl in a dead tree
2-trick or treaters
3-black cas
4-skeletons
5-scary spooks
6-gobblins gobbling
7-pumpkins glowing
8-monsters shrieking
9-ghosts a-booing
10-ghouls a-groaning
11-masks a-leering
12-bats a-flying
he Ghost (A fingerplay)
I saw a ghost (fingers circle eyes)
He saw me too (point to yourself)
I waved at him (wave your hand)
But he said, "BOO!" (try to scare person next to you)
ive Little Ghosts
Five little ghosts dressed all in white
Were scaring each other on Halloween night.
"Boo!" said the first one, "I'll catch you.'" (Hold up pointer)
"Wooo said the second, "I don't care if you do! (Hold up middle finger)
The third ghost said, "You can't run away from me." (Hold up ring finger)
And the fourth one said, "I'll scare everyone I see! (Hold up little finger)
Then the last one said, "It's time to disappear." (Hold up thumb)
"See you at Halloween time next year!"

"I Made a Jack-O-Lantern"
I made a jack-o-lantern for halloween night.
(form circle w/ hands)
He has three crooked teeth, but he won't bite
(point to teeth, shake head no)
He has two round eyes, but he can not see
(point to eyes, shut them)
He's a jolly jack-o-lantern as happy as can be.
(smile!)


81)
This is a great scary story, and the more claustrophobic you are the creepier it is.
http://www.holyshiite.com/caver/index.html


82) As TimS says, it's one of a series of apparent thrillers, where the tension is released as a laugh instead of a jump. Others include "Ghost with the One Black Eye," "Red Red Lips" "Ghost of Mabel Able"

You can get a very strong laugh with these, if you build up the tension. Use exactly the same technique as telling a jump tale, and make the transition to humor as sudden and complete as the thing you do when you go for a jump, and it will work. There is a general discussion of jump tales and such on the storytelling wiki, which is still up, and at its own domain again. The wiki is quiescent, but there's still some good stuff there.

I have a version of the Gorilla story with the same tag line on my website, with some discussion and suggestions for telling.
http://folktale.net/gorilla.html



83) And for your scaring pleasure, some Halloween links that didn't make it into the Oct/Nov 2005 issue.
The Haunters & The Haunted: Ghost Stories and Tales of the Supernatural

An online anthology of 57 stories collected by Ernest Rhys.
http://www.bartleby.com/166/index.html

This site will appear in the Oct/Nov issue but since then I have found a different section on the site that adds even more stories. So instead of 18 tales, you get 52!
http://www.americanfolklore.net/spooky-stories.html
Karen C. 8/2/05


84) Here's a Halloween site --
http://wilstar.com/holidays/hallown.htm

Mary G. 10/31/05


85) Also another good JUMP song is "The Old Woman All Skin and Bones." That's a great one to use to lull people into a spectular ending, depending on how loud you can scream.

Song starts:
There was an old woman, she was an old crone,
She was nothing but skin and bones.
Oooooooo, oooooooo, ooooooooo, oooo, oooo.
Sylvia I. 9/1/06


86) This song was sung by Burl Ives among others.
MY GOOD OLD MAN
Where are you going, my good old man?
Where are you going, my honey, lovey dove?
Where are you going, my good old man?
Best old man in the world

spoken: Hunting.

What do you want for breakfast, my good old man? (as above)
Eggs

How many do you want, my good old man
A bushel

A bushel will kill you, my good old man
I don't care

Where do you want to be buried, my good old man
Over there in the chimney corner

The ashes will fall on you, my good old man
I don't care

What'll you do then, my good old man?
I will haunt you

A haunt can't haunt a haunt, my good old man......
Cathryn F. 9/15/06


87) "The Story Of Abdul Rehman Abu Sultan and the Tongue of the Dead."
There's a version in Folktales from Iraq (Pine Street Books) edited by C.G. Campbell.

Bones:

Abdul Rehman is a poor carpenter living in Basra, and while sitting in a coffee shop keeping warm and bemoaning not having money, a friend tells him of a way to get `so much gold that you can't carry it, so many rare jewels that you cannot count them, and so much knowledge that you will master the world.' All he had to do was to go to the ruined city of Tell El Ummgaya and go to a certain cave filled with gold and jewels, in which sat a beautiful woman, and she would ask him to swear `I accept your lips and I accept your body and I accept your tongue' and kiss her. Abdul Rehman's friend had not done this as she refused to say a prayer with him first so he knew her to be evil.

Despite warnings that it would be a bad thing to do, Abdul Rehman goes to the cave and swears the oath and kisses her, at which point she sucks out and swallows his tongue and her dry, scaly, cold dead tongue enters his mouth and roots itself where his tongue used to be. It now controls his voice and declares that it will do what it promised (the gold, etc) but although he masters the world, it, `the tongue of the dead' would be his master, and demonstrates this by forcing him to move.

It then forces him back to Basra, forces him to divorce his wife and to frighten his son into falling to his death in a well. He tries to go into a mosque to get rid of it, but its forces him away. Eventually he finds himself by the river and manages to ask a passing Dervish, in writing, to say a prayer over him. When the prayer is said Abdul Rehman is dragged into the water, the tongue leaves his mouth, disappearing into the water, and four leeches come out and bite off his limbs. He is driven mad.

He is dragged from the water and propped by a gate as a begger, and people fling coins and jewels at his feet as alms. One day a stranger says that here indeed is someone who has more gold than he can carry, jewels than he could count and the knowledge to master the world - without arms he could not carry gold, without fingers he could not count the jewels and a madman masters the world for he is not ruled by the cravings and desires of the sane.

I've obviously not done it justice here. I'd recommend getting the book. I heard Ben Haggerty do an interesting version back in May where he set it in the USA and had alligators tear off the limbs.

Tom G. 10/20/09


88) "Halloween Song" by Harvey Heilbrun. © 2007
The words are at:
http://bit.ly/duCb4u

You can hear Harvey sing the song at:
http://bit.ly/cWPvdN

He adds this note: "For those guitar players and such that want to know the chords it only uses 3. Am, Dm and E7. If anyone wants I can post the chords on the words, so you know when to switch."

Contact Harvey at:
http://www.hdhstory.net/

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