Samhain, All Hallow's Eve -- October 31st has many different meanings
for artists and writers. This page explores a few of those meanings.
Many reject this holiday because of its association with horror-images
and pagan symbols. Many embrace it for the same reasons, using this
season as a time to confront both death and the shadows within us,
More commonly celebrated is Halloween:
an amusement, a time to dress up as fanciful characters and eat
candy, a time to share the thrill of ghost stories. Ghost and horror
stories also serve other purposes.
For some writers and artists, horror is a means of catharsis, of
venting pain, terror and outrage. It is deeply satisfying to create
a character closely resembling someone you know and then have them
torn apart by large monsters in explicit detail. And it probably
saves a great deal of bloodshed in the physical world.
For others, it is also a way to confront both death and the shadows
within us, and to test characters to the breaking point.
And for many, even in our technological culture, this is still
a celebration, the beginning of the harvest season. Our
Favorite October Recipes
In Mexico and other Hispanic cultures, this time of year sees
many events like The Day of the Dead.
On November 1st, many Hispanic families picnic together at the graves
of their grandparents. Children suck on sugar-candies shaped like
skulls. Some of us believe that mainstream American culture would
be healthier if we had such festivals and acknowledged death and
our own mortality more openly.
Peg's Page, poems for my mother
All Saint's Day
Symbols are not set in stone, in spite of the efforts of all sculptors. A symbol means what it means to you, and has the power in your life that you give it. I invite you to play with the symbols of Samhain for yourself, and find your own meaning in them -- and take that meaning forward with you into All Soul's Day.
Please visit our other pages
See the other Halloween pages of Our
Menagerie and Women
of the World
All images on this page are created and copyrighted by Anitra L. Freeman.
All text and images on StreetWrites, StreetLife Gallery or Anitra L. Freeman
pages is owned and copyrighted by the author named and is printed here
by permission. If you would like to reprint any contents elsewhere, I'd
be tickled pink, but please ask