Elizabeth Howard

Elizabeth writes literary non-fiction, haiku, cultural rants, and Demand Poetry in order to forward the cause of beautiful writing. She teaches and speaks about the rhetorical impact of beautiful writing. A recent transplant to Connecticut, she calls London, Kansas City, and Iowa home.

Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?

eternal sunshine

I was visited by an old friend in my dream. In the dream, he was as physically real as I am right now. The scruff on his face. The sound of his voice. Even while he and I talked, I knew it was a dream. I knew this truth: in a few minutes, he will…

Some Trouble

Lately I’ve been having some trouble writing. Particularly here on my blog. I suppose I have blog writing block. I am going to write about that today, to pass through it a bit. Feel free to skim or skip over this post if that isn’t your thing. The trouble with blog writing block is the…

Love all the People

Kids. Boy we sure do love ’em. Even people who don’t actually like kids I bet would be pretty quick to acknowledge that kids — although sometimes a pain — are love machines. They make it. They reflect it. They live it. They embody it. They are our teachers in it. So we love the…

What Writing Looks Like

The Writers Room NYC

What Writing Looks LikeThere’s a romance to the idea of writing. When you tell someone you are a writer, they are often all like “ooohhh whoa soooo cool!” Why is that? Well it’s pretty much because READING is awesome. It’s hellaciously awesome, the single best thing in the wide world to do with any amount…

Changing My Mind

Why I Changed My Mind and Took the PillsWhen I got to the point where I really truly thought “hey yeah… maybe I should take pills for depression,” I felt a lot of things. Failure Yep. I failed. I just could not “get over” my excess “emotionalness.” Here, there and everywhere I went, feeling anxious…

Hypnotized by the Mundane

“…Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” — Mary Oliver, “The Summer Day“ Life is wild. Though… It is sometimes hard to see it. Especially since life can masquerade as being quite mundane. Get up. Go to work. Go to bed. Go to work again. Make food.…

On 45 Years of Friends

JD and Isaiah working men

For 45 years, I have been a friend and had many friends. Even after all this time, I am surprised by all the wonderfulness that makes being a friend new all the time. All Kinds of Friends I have friends I have never met in person. I have friends who are old lovers. I am amazed…

I’ll always remember you 2014

Should old acquaintance be forgot My mother was not sentimental. She saw the world in a very pragmatic way. If you were not feeling happy, well… just cheer up. If you were feeling ill… well, wait awhile. Things were bound to change. I wished I’d asked my mom more questions about her own level of…

Into the Zone – #reverb14, Day 4

Creativity is Subtraction art by Austin Kleon on Brain Pickings by Maria Popova

The act of being creative makes every artist — every person — better.We are all lightning rods, conduits for that which the Universe wants born into this world. What energies did you channel this year? — While day 2’s post I sang my song of multitudinous life, there’s a hidden secret to what drives my…

It’s Just the Weather – #reverb14, Day 3

Just the Weather

I don’t feel like a constant. I feel like super balls in a thunderstorm.It’s all too easy to put off loving where we are until everything is perfect. What can you love about where you are now? Blergh. If I were a weather man, that’s how I would describe the weather today. Cold, damp, rainy,…

I am not a finisher – #reverb14, Day 2

My equation for getting it done.Day 2 – What unfinished projects from 2014 am you willing to release now? That’s the “story” I like to tell myself, though it isn’t true: I am not a finisher. I actually RECOILED at this prompt. It spun me down all kind of paths. Why? Because my life is a…

On My Mother’s Island

All of life is a thing marked and used.This is the island where my mother is still living. There is not a great deal of the “normal” here. We are just a bunch of hangers on. For those of us here, we are eating off the breadcrumb trail from whence we came. There is a lot…

Life is Terrifying

Or, Why I Just Friggin Love Halloween

Cam's Head on a Platter
I can remember one of the first really scary movies I saw.

It was “The Giant Spider Invasion.” That classic 2-star fave came out in 1975. Which means someone in my family let me see that film when I was FIVE! If I recall, it was at the drive-in.

For years and years afterward, I literally RACED up the steps of our split foyer home, anytime I was caught alone on the lower level. Just beyond the doorway, I was sure a giant spider was lurking, ready to pounce.

I love the big, unreasonable scares of Halloween. I love that feeling underneath my heart, the pit of doom in my stomach. I love the ghoulish decor and horrifying costumes. I love “Modern Family”‘s special, and all the other Halloween themed fun.

I take a pass on new fangled “safe” fun, like Trunk or Treat, or going for a spin with the kids in their costumes around the mall. The street where you live may be scary place: the mall is 100 times scarier.

I’m intrigued by those who have a distaste for Halloween terror and frights. Whatever its roots — whether in pagan history or Christian hallows — life itself is terrifying. It’s filled with war, cancer, ebola, racism, rape and major league worship of criminals. There’s bullying, mean girls, political machinations and just plain natural catastrophe. Some days, a zombie apocalypse seems like it would be an anti-climax.

I guess that’s why I love Halloween… it’s the day the dead, the weary, the twisted, the frightened, the entombed, the maniacal — finally getting a chance to feel free.

Here’s a few of my favorite Halloween videos. Enjoy:

Andy, going through the Haunted House:

video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player

From Shaun of the Dead, greatest zombie film ever.


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