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[personal profile] jeanvieve
Dear Great Pumpkin,

I have to say, your latest reward for being the avatar of your trickster ways is something I had not expected. And like all your blessings, I find myself exulted and pricked to the core at once. But I am grateful for the privilege to be pierced by your truths, merry and fearful alike.

When you beckon, I must ever follow as you soar through the cloud-filled skies that hide away the moon, like the Sidhe on the wind and following the paths of the wild hunt through the sky. And how we've ridden, you and I! The wind in my face, my hands cold holding to the bundle of skin over sticks that you've given me to ride; all of this worth it for the vistas of the world spread out like night-cloaked jewels on the breasts of the earth below me. Children hear the wind of our passing, and dream of doors to be opened, of tissue-wrapped boxes to be unlocked. Lovers hear the rustling of sheets, and dream of their exultation, and of their beloved, and their own mortality, and hold to one another close in the night. And the old and lonely shut their eyes at midnight's tolling, their hearts cracking open enough to hear our wild laughter; in that moment, they are one of us, riding the wild north winds once more before their bones rattle.

And then down we swoop, earth-bound into the most sincere of pumpkin patches and into the roots that cling to the soil, disturbing the worms. My heart is in my throat for the fear and unease of this roller coaster ride, as I poke aside the bones and rotting vegetation of that which has gone before. I yowl with the black cats on their fences as we shake the vines and pull them loose from their soil to scrabble across the surface, leaving their tender cilia exposed to the cold, cruel air of fall and the winter to come. There is no mercy for that which gave birth to your glory. It must die away, yellowing and dry to blow in the wind and be buried under the snow to nourish the soil for the spring that may come one day. The gourd is carried away in state, the vine left alone.

Finally, the jack-o-lantern sits proudly on the steps, grinning at the children in the night. Without care or thought for the patch left behind, the carved pumpkin sits and nods in self-deluded wisdom over the tricks and treats of the children who pass before that candled gaze. Eventually, they find their way to bed, chocolate-covered hands gripping their sheets as they shiver in their dreams. Yet the night of shadows and air still remains full of tricks. The older children come at last, resentful of losing their youth or the privileges of wearing a mask over their tortured visages. They bear weapons in hand, and with mighty swings smash the pumpkins off down the sidewalks into the streets.

Then does the jack-o-lantern despair. For what was she carved but for this? To end up an orange smear on the black of the pavement in the road, food for crows? And then do you lean in, Great Pumpkin, and whisper yes. That we are precisely made beautiful to be destroyed in an act of wild rebellion. That just as we left behind the vines that nurtured us, so our insides will go on to be food for crows. And then, through inelegant means, dropped once more into fields without thought, without hope, without dreams, only to sprout tiny roots and grow again. To remake ourselves a thousand thousand times, until the end of the world.

I have your dark songs in my ears, bleeding out of my fingers onto the pages. I promise you, my beloved GP, that I will fulfill all you desire of me with courage and humor. Do not be merciful to me. I do not wish it. I merely wish to continue to endure your favors for as long as I draw breath, and shout into the night sky my invitation and defiance alike.
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January 2017

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