Sunday, February 17, 2013

The Pumpkin Dream - author notes

This third entry for Tall Tales / Shorter Days author-notes series, goes back in time to around 2004 (circa A Breif History... Part 1). This is a look backward at a particular poem, and the first Bindlegrim book which was really the birth of a holiday alter-ego. With this blog started in April 2011, the contents of that book in some form - the poetry, the illustration, as well as a vintage-style commemorative Halloween lantern has been in the Bindlegrim blog 26 times. So with that in mind, I will endeavor to discuss something new,  while keeping this entry brief...!

The Pumpkin Dream

I perhaps enjoy this poem most pre-2010, that is, as words alone, (as it is now being presented in the print version of Tall Tales Shorter Days).  Originally there was no illustration for every eight lines of rhyme, no scrolling borders of skeletons and cats, nor any trace of graphic design ding-battery scattered about the pages. At that time there was only pulse, rhyme, and sensory descriptions...

When tattered oaks of autumn lend
prophetic chatter to the wind,
and gremlins from a branch dispatch
with felon deeds upon the latch,
We trust these words illuminate
of bogymen whose hunger slake
on children in a sugar feast
the fearless know as Trick or Treat.

Not to say that the graphic work wasn't exceptional fun (!!!) - but in some ways what came next was quite distracting from the poetry. I have to admit, once I began working on the visual art, it changed my experience of the poem - like a music video can  alter the experience of a song, for better or worse. Even now, I will catch myself reciting the poetry, no visuals at hand, doing my best to mock the voice of Vincent Price or Christopher Lee as the words alone build the senses of that Halloween night's adventure...

Trembling smirks from candle beams
devour themselves in ash and steam,
as vapor licks the ailing hearts
of smoldered pumpkins in the dark.
Escaping flames from embers red
flee hoot owls hunting overhead,
where critters on the roasted bits
of pumpkin features start to rip.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Because of the difficulties designing poetry for e-book formats The Pumpkin Dream poem is NOT included in the e-book version. It is only available in the print version here on Amazon or Etsy.

Well, even though Tall Tales Shorter days contains the non-illustrated version, I just couldn't write a blog entry without throwing in at least some media. Below is a little promo video for the original book The Pumpkin Dream: A Cautionary Tale from the Library of Mr. Bumble Bindlegrim to perhaps offer a touch more sense for its Halloween mood:

As before, comment as you like here on this blog entry, and I draw for a free book from that week's comments! This week starts Sunday 2-17-2013 and ends the evening of 2-24-2014. In the meantime, if you are looking for either version of the poem, visit my author page on Amazon. Thank you for visiting!

Bindlegrim books in need of a new home. PS - Cover art is by David Irvine


1) Leave a blog comment here between 2-17 to 2-24 about whatever you like... about pumpkins, mice, Jack O'Lanterns with attitude...

2) For each author-notes blog entries, I will draw randomly at the end of that week to give someone who commented a signed printed copy of Tall Tales Shorter Days.

3) At the end of all six blog entries I will draw from all comments (more comments, more chances to win) for one Bindlegrim lantern - The Horrid Decor (Orange on Ghost Skin) seen below.

Note - Bindlegrim encourages and hopes, but does not require, that readers might leave a Like or a Review on the Amazon pages for the book: print or e-book.


Updated 2-25-2013

to this weeks winner: Peanut...! And thanks again everyone for leaving a comment. All are entered into the lantern drawing at the end of this series! I wish I had enough to go around for everyone!


  1. The poems remind me when I was in grade school and my teacher would recite short Halloween stories in front of the class. Very nostalgic. (Also If I happen to win by default and there's no one else to claim a book I would gladly gift it to another Halloween fiend)

    1. Awesome, glad that's what your taking from it. It's a bit of mix, I suppose. It's written rather simply for a younger audience but with nostalgia and advanced vocab that an older audience could appreciate. Happy to send another copy if it works out that way. A gift to a fiend is excellent, or local library...

  2. hi,so happy to see you have a blog..had bid on some paper lanterns last fall and think that they where your art work! Alas Idid not win..boohoo!! but will keep my eye out for them.... think I'll get your book on Amazon for my Kindle, thanks for sharing..Fab Halloween Art work! Debra

    1. Hi Debra & so glad you stopped by here. Love your work, and was certain I was following your blog... but maybe that was etsy, facebook, flickr...? Re-added just in case. Oh, so many sites to make one's head spin these days! And I saw many many desirable newer vintage-style lanterns the past year, that mine were a mere speck of what's out there now!

      Thank you for searching down the book! It is a free loaner in the Kindle Library right now for another 60 days or so? And I'll do a drawing for a printed copy this Sunday which is 50/50 chance at the moment. And put you in the drawing as well for the lantern. With so many responses, I just may have to do two... hmmm....

  3. I think you have amazing talent and adore your work. The lanterns are simply amazing. Halloween has always been my favorite holiday -- thank you for keeping the Halloween spirit alive.

    1. May the pumpkin light bless your Halloween spirit! And to you, many many thanks for the positive feedback. It keeps the spook in Bumble's bindle.

  4. Thanks again everyone for your comments! And my apologies for lagging a bit on the drawing. I will endeavor to get that done tonight and notify the winner!

  5. Congratulations to this weeks winner: Peanut...! You can contact me thru bumble at bindlegrim (dot) com.

    Thanks again everyone for leaving a comment. All are entered into the lantern drawing at the end of this series for each week you comment. I wish I had enough to go around for everyone!


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