Meet your vegetables: The Pumpkins

Meet the Pumpkins if you dare

Midnight is your fuzzy black cat and she’s out past curfew again. You sigh on the porch swing and muster yourself to go find her. You close your eyes for just a moment before tiptoeing into the spooky pumpkin patch – where Midnight likes to hide.

At first you don’t see them under the big elephant ear leaves – but as your eyes widen to the dark, big round heads rise into focus. Two, then ten, then a hundred wicked eyes crinkle, prickly vines snake your ankle-bones – and they begin to sing:

We’ve got you here at midnight
On this wicked Hallow’s Eve
We’ve got you here to shake with fear
We will not let you leave

Each year you cut and carve us
Each year you wield your knife
Well this year dear, it’s you who’ll fear
Who’ll fear for your dear life

The pumpkins close with sneering grins
Snatch you up and start to spin
Your body shakes like brittle leaves
To the sound of their mean recipes

We’ll cut a hole on top your head
And spoon out what’s inside
We’ll slowly roast your tiny teeth
And crunch them when they’re dried

We’ll find the roundest softer flesh
And there we’ll carve a face
So the candle shines through brightly
Calling ghoulies to the place

The little ones we’ll roast em too
And mash them in a hurry
Or cube em, dice em, julienne
And stew them in a curry

And to the sweetest momma ones
Who kiss your teardrops dry
We’ll spice them up with cinnamon
And bake them in a pie!

At once, your scream explodes into panic fireworks and you flail backwards without looking. You land hard in the dirt, turn and run for your life – cruel laughter fading behind you. Straight home to the porch swing – where you shake yourself awake to Midnight under the porch light and the clock chuckling twelve.

Illustration by Corrie Godfrey, midnight cat seeker and graphic artist, who feels terror in the pit of her stomach from wicked goblin-y chants.