Category Archives: ghost stories

A Horror Tale: The Grimm Pumpkin

Spooky Samhain Poetry

Merry meet all,

A group on Facebook is holding a horror story contest. The limit is 500 words. I couldn’t resist entering. So I wrote a story. I thought what relates to Halloween and is harmless? Something ordinary that no one suspects. A pumpkin, right? But to a child, a child is the character in the story, everything seems alive. So here is my story. By the way, if you are on Facebook and a member of the group Horror Writers Net, please drop by to vote for my story! There are a few days left. 

The Grimm Pumpkin 

          On the night of October 31st, a Giant pumpkin watched Tommy, Brian and Johnny throw toilet paper and eggs at peoples’ homes. Two evil eyes scowled at the costumed children with hate. The tiny nose arched between the eyes. Blood oozed down the face. The flesh curved back from the mouth, revealing smelly stringy pulp. The mouth curved back on both sides, displaying two rows of chiseled fangs. The green root lay motionless on the porch. 

            Tommy eyed the moldy glowing thing. His small hand caressed the eggs. He stared at the pumpkin in terror. He swallowed hard and glanced to see if his friends had caught up with him. They tossed toilet paper and eggs at someone’s house. Their Converse sneakers shuffled on the damp autumn leaves.

            “Hey guys, check this out. Egg it or what?” Tommy said. His best friends, Brian and Johnny, both in the same class as him, came to a dead stop.

            “Does anyone live there? Who carved the freaky pumpkin? Looks like no one’s home,” Johnny said. He peered in the bleak windows.

            “Who cares?” Tommy said. Fire flickered off of the pumpkin as Tommy approached it. He wound the toilet paper in his hand and drew his other arm back to throw the eggs. The pumpkin grimaced at the boys, as if daring them.

            “Does anyone know what happened to Michael last Halloween?” Brian asked.

            “He went missing.” Johnny said and shrugged.

            Tommy threw the eggs. They landed with a sickening splat and dripped down the house. He threw the toilet paper next. He tossed his head back and laughed. The others joined him.

            “Look at that pumpkin. It’s cool,” Brian said. Wind blew the crisp leaves on the porch. The bare tree boughs creaked. Crows cawed at the full moon.

            Brian waved his hand in front of Tommy but Tommy’s gaze remained fixed on the pumpkin. Tommy sauntered up the steps. A spider crawled down the slimy pumpkin’s face.

            “Tommy?” Johnny said, coming to stand by his side. “Earth to Tommy.” Brian and Johnny glanced at each other.

            “Let’s get out of here,” Johnny said. “We might get caught.”

            Brian checked over his shoulder and waved his hand. “Tommy? C’mon, bud.”

            Tommy was unable to tear his gaze away. Tendrils of the slimy pulp tugged on his arms and legs. The pumpkin’s maw widened. The root snatched Tommy’s leg and wound around his ankles. Tommy screamed. Brian grabbed Tommy by the arm.

            “Help him, Brian,” Johnny yelled. His eyes widened in fear.

            The pumpkin devoured Tommy whole. A horrible gurgling sound roared in the night. A terrible scream was heard from the pumpkin’s bowels.

            Johnny ran for his life. Brian stood on the sidewalk, crying. He had one last egg. He dodged the root’s vicious grasp. Brian fired. The egg cracked and spread on the pumpkin. He glanced at it one last time and ran home. Tommy was never seen again.



I hope you enjoy reading it. Samhain is 6 days away! Keep an eye for more posts about Samhain. 

Blessed Be,

Lady Spiderwitch )O(



Leave a comment

Filed under ghost stories, pumpkins, Samhain Superstition and Lore

Local ghost folklore from a master storyteller

Merry Meet All,

Three times a bridge over these waves shall rise
built by the white man, so strong and so wise,
three times shall fall like a dying breath
in storm, in silence, and last in death.
Anonymous poem from the Halifax Herald


For every wave that washes ashore, there is a ghost story.

A local author and friend of mine, Steve Vernon, has published some excellent books on the local folklore of Nova Scotia. He learned the art of storytelling from his grandfather. He narrates the book well because he blends fact, history, and folklore into a collection of compelling tales. The books are about folklore, brought to life by the skilled author Steve Vernon.

The first book is Haunted Harbours Ghost stories from Old Nova Scotia. If you read the most recent posting, the ghost lore is connected to the local history. The book contains a map of Nova Scotia. Each tale is set in Nova Scotia. The map aids the reader to know where each tale is set. He writes with a bone-chilling believability that might keep you awake at night or on edge seated around the campfire.

What is great about his books is how he brings the stories to life. You are right there with the characters, living the stories as chills creep up your spine. Ghosts roam Sable Island, the ghost ship The Teazer haunts Mahone Bay, and phantom pipers lament for lost loves. When I read this, I was delighted to find an author after my own heart- by that, I mean, someone who loves spooky macabre tales and local folklore as much as I do.

His next book, Halifax Haunts- Exploring the City’s Spookiest Spaces, is another collection of wickedly delightful spooky tales of local lore. This excellent book focuses more on the local tales of Halifax. The previous book focused on the folklore from around Nova Scotia. For every wave that washes in ashore, there is a ghost story. One tale tells us of the window at St. Paul’s church. The window has been replaced numerous times yet always bears the silhouette of a man. One of the stories is about the cursing of the MacDonald bridge. The bridge was cursed three times from a Mi’kmaq man in a jealous passionate rage. The curse caused the bridge to fall twice. A chieftain removed the curse and he buried a hatchet on the site. We can hope the curse is removed for the wellbeing of those who dare to cross it. The quotation above relates to the tale here. Another tale that was a favorite of mine is the story of the famous haunted restaurant, The Five Fishermen. The Five Fishermen restaurant is successful. The hauntings are not stopping customers from dining on excellent cuisine. This book is well worth reading, whether you are from away or a curious Haligonian, you will enjoy these tales.

The next book is entitled The Lunenburg Werewolf and other stories of the supernatural by Steve Vernon. He has an uncanny talent for digging ghost stories up from their graves, so to speak, and telling them so well. The Lunenburg Werewolf is his best book yet. The cover is amazing. This book was snappy, scary, and spine-tingling. The tale of the foolish naive young girl in love who walks backward over a watery bridge in the middle of the night on Samhain, carrying a mirror, and bumps into the devil made me jump out of my seat. He knows how to set a reader’s heart racing with his imagination, pacing, and vivid imagery. These tale encompass most of Nova Scotia. I marvel at the way he can dig up so many stories and yet in all the books, every tale is unique and well told.

Maritime Murders is his latest book. Maritime Murders is his most bone chilling yet. I read books about local ghost lore by other authors. Steve Vernon grips you and keeps you gripped even as you are horrified. The book is about the nastiest crimes committed from 1770 to 1938 in the Maritime area. You can read about a woman who poisoned her children with matchheads or the man who was hung three times. The murders are grisly and even though you want to look away or stop reading, you can’t.

Steve Vernon does his research for each tale and it shows in the tales. The way he blends fact with the macabre in his stories make these books unique. So sit down on a misty foggy evening in a quiet old tavern for the appropriate atmosphere, and read these books. After, you may think you saw a shadow flicker out of the corner of your eye. Or is it your imagination?

Next, more local lore from another master of lore, Helen Creighton.

Leave a comment

Filed under ghost stories, Local ghost folklore from master storyteller, Steve Vernon