And then the Gathering of Apples

Контент 16+ (лексика)
   One of these days soon, it will be the evening of Halloween in America. End of October, and where I lived the autumn was rich and full of luster in the days -- carnage of red, orange, yellow, and copper leaves tumbling from the trees amid the wind-blown avenues and hilly lanes. It was as if autumn were a magnificent old woman, nubile in the springtime, fecund all summer long, and now returning to the stage for a last bow, in the rapture of a pagan rainbow, amid the applause of the wind. That was autumn to me back then.
   In my neighborhood, at least before the commercializing stores took over, we made our own costumes -- my first was to re-create myself as a robot composed of painted cardboard boxes -- and when it got dark, my friends and I would gather and go out among the streets amid the neighboring houses. We didn’t need our parents to guard us because it was safe with just us kids. We would knock on all the doors, and when the people answered, we would say the traditional “Trick or Treat”. What this meant was that they should give us candy (we carried large sacks with us) -- that was the ‘treat’ part, but if they didn’t (but they always did), we would ‘trick’ them, and in those days it meant rubbing soap on their windows. I did it a couple of times. The soap, of course, would come off easily.
   After we had wandered (what seemed to us) far and wide all evening long (a couple of hours), we would say good night and return to our homes. I used to love those evenings. Being a kid in America in those days had several joyous highlights: the day school was out for summer, your birthday party, Christmas morning, and Halloween.
   But then one autumn, there was a problem with the ‘trick’ part. One of the kids spray-painted some cars, disfiguring them, and costing the owners a lot of money. A year or two later, some kids suffered horribly because a pervert put razor blades into apples and handed them out. The children bit into the apples and the blood poured. And before long we children started to hear a strange word of warning: the word “pedophile.”
   The world started to be an evil place, a cobweb or traps and snares. In retrospect, I would say that America changed for the worse, not only with the Kennedy assassination but also when Halloween became perilous and the haunting but all-for-fun faces in the pumpkin jack-o’lanterns began to resemble the soulless helmets of predators. Sure enough, that’s when the fuckery started and it’s been nothing but downhill ever since.
   When I eventually moved to Florida, the magic of Halloween was gone completely. For one thing, it stayed daylight too long and the weather was too damned hot. Also, I had lived in the hills in West Virginia, and in Florida everything was flat and straight. There were no magically winding lanes, no owls, no shadows of vampires just behind the streetlights. It was too prosaic.
  But the real problem was religion. In the American South, the religious folk are always on the lookout for Satan, and Halloween was an easy prey. So every year, the holy crackpots would fill the newspapers with dire eruptions about pagan rituals and satanic rites. Moreover, by this time, pedophilia had apparently become an American sport second only to football -- or so the (truly) spooked citizens feared. And the worst of it was that sometimes they were right.
   The last Halloween I ever had in America consisted of me sitting outside the front door of my house in St. Augustine with a bucket of candy. Here would come the kids in the daylight hour of 19.00 (7.00 pm) in little groups, strictly under the surveillance of their mothers. The moms would wait in the street while the little urchins came to me with their sacks and said “Trick or Treat.” I would give, they would go, and the march would resume. I would wipe the sweat from my face and ask myself if it was now a respectable hour to start drinking.
  It was as much fun as finding someone’s severed ear in your Big Mac, or attending some unknown uncle’s funeral. For the kids it must have been as thrilling as trying on gloves or hanging out at a bus stop pretending you are going somewhere. Then, when the bus was long gone, walking home.
   If it is not the pedophiles, it is the Christians who are always killing the joy. They killed the Olympics for a thousand years, and I think they would kill sexual pleasure if they could. And in the American South at least they have killed Halloween. If none of the above, it is the multi-culturalists who spoil the fun. Now, in America, Christmas cannot be a public event for fear of offending non-Christians. Etc.
   Sterility of any kind is anathema to the forces of life. The Politically Correct have No Sense of Humor. Radical Feminists have No Sense of Humor. Fanatical religious types have No Sense of Humor. The Nazis had NO Sense of Humor.
  Apparently in Russia today, Halloween is just an occasion for a masquerade among adults, private parties, and so on. But in the past, it had a relationship with the land itself and the time of year. With harvest. With the gathering of apples.
  Imagine that. The gathering of apples on a windy autumn day. O how I want it!! -- to relive my childhood. Come with me my pagan and pantheistic friends! Come with me where the apples are.  And afterwards, the pancakes and the laughter and the passion and the fires. And the strewn apples of the ancient goddesses of autumn forever and ever.

Source: Eric-Artem LJ

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