'AVI LIO N W E S S JO LLEY T he sidewalk is strewn with a million leaves of gold . . .
■ Through an open window a light can be ■ seen. Black and orange streamers decow rate the frame. G1ow-in-the-dark skulls smile gravely from the corners.
From behind the hedge row I stand silently in the con cealing darkness. My hands in my pockets protect them from the cold. The collar of my overcoat is turned up tightly over my chin; my graying beard helping to con ceal the telltale whiteness of my face. Inside, a boy of ten is busy with an ice cream scoop, ladling the entrails from an enormous pumpkin. He deposits the seeds on a sheet of wax paper, tryinq un successfully to mask his disgust, gazing at his slimy fingers with an air of fascinated revulsion. Across the table his mother is busy with a shiny kitchen knife, carving a larqe toothy smile into a second, smaller pumpkin. The boy holds up his hands, moist with mucous, for his mother to see. They both laugh silently. His mother holds the discarded orange eyes over her own and sticks out her tongue. The boy gig gles again, shooting a wet seed at her from between his fingers. A small ghost of a sound penetrates the chill night air. Slowly I back away from the hedge and disappear into the darkness. 68