Another Poem for Samhain

Helpless Beings, image from

A shuffling of ghosts 
burn away in the midday sun 
like smoke dissipating.  
It was their time.  

I scribble ink 
onto paper and parchment, 
how becoming it is 
when it becomes something. 
I’m partial to this. 

The occasional 
slam dunk of completion 
is a sweet rush   
but creativity 
has always made my tides turn.  

I drink my coffee 
then go out
place a tobacco offering 
by the tree
poised to welcome 
a hoard of those
newly passed over. 

© N Nazir 2022

Written for Shay’s Word Garden where Shay brings us inspiration with the beautiful poems of Susie Clevenger (words used: shuffling, ghosts, ink, coffee, tobacco, poised), Sammi Scribbles Weekend Writing Prompt: Dunk, 78 words, The Sunday Muse (image as shown), and Poets and Storytellers United with this week’s theme: Sweet.

Conversation in a Graveyard #publication

Photo by Pixabay on

She’s here again.
What does she want?
I think she’s looking for something.
In a graveyard?
It’ll be dark soon, she ought to run along.
I think I’ve seen her before…
What do you suppose she wants?
Perhaps she’s lost.
I think she might be searching for something.
Her marbles?
She’s got a camera.
Yeah, she’s taking photos.
She took some of the sunset earlier. Right pretty it was. Over your grave there, Betty. She must have taken about a hundred.
And she was talking to herself.
Funny, aren’t they, these young folk, these days? The stuff they do for fun.
I definitely know her. She was here years ago. I . . .

. . . would be honoured if you would go here to read the rest of this short story.

© N Nazir 2022

My greatest thanks to Spillwords for publishing my short story, flash fiction, whatever it is! It’s composed entirely of dialogue which was a new thing I tried and it started off as a bit of nonsense. Then I went back and edited it and added a few more lines and pretty soon it became what it was. It didn’t make the Halloween shorts but they published it as part of the general Halloween series and I’m happy enough with that 🙂 Hope you like!

If You Really Want to Know

Inner Beauty, © Thomas Barbey

I failed Goblin Finishing School for being too nice.  
Cause some goblins are sweet underneath
they just pretend to be grieved to warn the crazies away.  
That’s humans to you.  They’re not fans of your lot.  

We have lofty dreams too, it’s just hard 
when people look at you like you’re some 
creepy skulking thing, you know?  
How dare you?  

I’m a perfectly fantastic goblin.  
I have manners.  I’m a bit different 
but then I always was.  I failed the test 
for making a racket in the night

to wake the lesser sleeping folk.  Instead
I’d leave them little gifts like bouquets of hyacinths 
at special times like Hallow’s eve’s eve.
And I’ve got my own grotto now.

All the other Gs got green-eyed about it
but I never cared much for their iron floors
and thorny walls.  Mine’s got a lily-cushioned bed
a grove for the peacocks, and the delicate chime

of yogi bells to wake me in the morning.  I sometimes feel
that there is something at work in my soul, which I do not
, and I may be solely the only one, but I’d rather
be alone than feel more alone somewhere I don’t belong.

© N Nazir 2022

Written for Shay’s Word Garden where we are given inspiration with Christina Rossetti (words used: goblin, grieved, hyacinth, iron, thorny, lily, peacocks, chime), The Sunday Muse (image as shown), and Poets and Storytellers United where the theme is quotes from scary films and books. I chose: “There is something at work in my soul which I do not understand,” from Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. I decided to include it in the actual text as it just seemed fitting.

The Crack Between the Worlds

They can’t hear you in the upside-down.  You would do well not to get caught there.  It is the shadow thrown by the light and exists in the realm of barely real tipping over into the concrete world.  There is no day, only a howling wind of eternal night, housing all the other howling lost things.  Things with teeth and beating wings.  Stingers.  Go quietly now, tread with care.  It holds all your nightmares, they shiver through the trees, not merely brain conjurings but entities.  Your fears fleshed them and you didn’t even know it.  Another’s nightmare birthed them and now you’re in it.

You would do well not to get caught in the upside-down.  It is cold, so cold.  Everything shifts in the dark, becomes other.  How can you believe your own eyes?  Illusions trick you at every turn.  You, human, have no place there.  Don’t will it accidentally, don’t get caught in the in-between and slip through.  You may not return.  Unless you are wily.  Unless you have some fire and can keep your head.  But even then, even then.  Don’t give in to your fears.  

But if you find yourself in the upside-down, you must face the shadow self of all that was.  To solve the riddle of your escape.  Your own death you must face.  Take heart.  Become stealth.  Wear a costume of power, a trinity as talisman.  Onward.  Your beating heart.  Onward. 

© N Nazir 2022

Written for W3 Prompt #24: Wea’ve Written Weekly at The Skeptic’s Kaddish hosted by David, where the poet of the week (which happens to be me, I know, right? Pretty stoked 🙂) invites us to write an ekphrastic poem inspired by a horror film that gave you the chills. For example, Interview with a Vampire, Halloween, The Babadook, to name a few. Or it could be a comedy horror, such as The Addams Family or Shaun of the Dead, etc. You could write from the point of view of one of the characters, or respond to a particular scene, whatever you prefer.

Or, if that’s not your thing . . . you could write about an experience that gave you the chills, any form permitted.

*Despite this being my own prompt, it took me a while to get into it as I don’t deal well with horror films and I generally avoid them. Comedy horrors are more down my street. Having said that, you may have guessed that my prose poem was responding to popular horror series, Stranger Things (yeah, I know, that was an about-turn but this one’s an exception).

Written also for Shay’s Word Garden, where we are given inspiration with poet, Ric Masten, and musician, Neil Young. Words used: stingers / quietly / riddle / costumes / trinity. I’m a bit late to this Word Garden as Shay has already started a new one based on the poetry of Christina Rossetti, which you can also take part in here if you wish.


My Throwback Thursday is the suitably chilling Hell is Round the Corner by Tricky featuring Martina Topley-Bird, from his debut album, Maxinquaye. Tricky was originally a member of British trip-hop band Massive Attack (another Bristol legend) in the early 90s before he went solo. You may also recognise him from his walk-on part in Hollywood blockbuster The Fifth Element as one of the characters trying to steal Corbyn Dallas’ airline tickets 🙂