Are you Benny or Teddy?

7 x 20: A Ghost at the Old Salem Burial Ground

As part of our ongoing collaboration with Oddball Magazine, this week we bring you the Halloween edition of Andrew Borne’s column ‘7x’, entitled “A Ghost at the Old Salem Burial Ground”.

I am the ghost of Nathan Piproes
I don’t recall my life it was so long ago
But tell me what’s up with all of those
Occult obsessed tourists from around the globe
Coming down to Salem for the big Octo
Brrr they make a spirit like me grow cold

In just a few days the masses will die down
But right now it seems like they’re all around
Looking for trouble in this quaint burial ground
From derby street to the old town hall
Where do they come from each and every fall
To Turn this town into a carnival?

For haunted happenings is now upon us
Costumed buffoons around my tomb do not suss
They paid too much for the souvenirs they’ll take back on their tour bus
How I long for the days of 1893
When people did not indulge in such debauchery
So I invite my other dead friends to come and join me


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Click here for full poem


Nathaniel Hawthorne and Elizabeth Montgomery
Tonight we will scare the fools with such ease
Beneath the shadows of these mulberry trees
When I see a group of teens walk by
I spin my head and rip out my eyes
But they just laugh and do not act at all surprised

Oh dear, it seems that they are not fearful
Of us apparitions which makes me tearful
Not even the one who looked rather beer full
A real spirit can not compete
With the spectacle of this Salem Halloween
The tourist trap prices alone would make me scream

And thus since no one is afraid
I pray for the crowds to quickly fade
And perhaps to get a share of what they’ve paid
To come to Salem in October
In a silly costume and become un sober
I can not wait until it’s over


Andrew Borne is poet and columnist for Oddball Magazine. His ‘7x’ column appears weekly.

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