Spooktacular Classics are dried-up chunks of word vomit which I like to regurgitate every time a Halloween Spooktacular event rolls onto the Interwebs scene.
You’ve been warned.
The Guardian of the Caws
Chirping crickets harmonize an eerie symphony,
Hiding deep within dirt rows newly plowed.
The last vestige of sunlight winks out,
And the moon peeks from behind black clouds.
Dark crows gather, flapping feathered wings.
They chant: “Caw-caw, caw-caw, caw-caw!”
They peck, they fight, they chomp with their beaks,
Ripping husks and kernels, leaving corncobs raw.
The Scarecrow detaches itself from its post,
Yawns, stretches, and addresses the gathering flock.
“Be scared, you little winged ugly bastards!
It is I, the Guardian that you mock!”
The crows stop pecking; their black eyes glint.
“Caw-caw-caw-caw-caw-caw-caw!” they laugh.
The Scarecrow’s wrinkled paper face crinkles in disgust
As it begins to plot out its wicked, inevitable wrath.
The Scarecrow flexes its straw limbs and grins.
“Giggle all you like, you despicable sons-of-crows!
It is I who shall laugh when this dreary night is over!”
And it gives chase to the birds, up and down cornrows.
After many hours of fumbling and stumbling,
The Scarecrow trips on a stalk and lands on its face.
It bends its limber straw body into a sitting position,
Then holds paper-head-in-straw-hands in disgrace.
The crows flap back down, ignoring the field’s Guardian.
“Caw-caw, caw-caw, caw-caw!” they chime.
The Scarecrow grumbles and jumps back to its feet.
“You little fucks, this happens every single time!
“You run and scatter whenever I give chase,
And you belittle me with your wretched little eyes!
You mock me—berate me—with your caws!
Why do you do this? Do you seek my demise?”
One crow cocks its head and hops up off the ground,
Landing with ease on the Scarecrow’s denim-clad arm.
The Scarecrow twitches in spasmodic anger, dismayed,
And then the other crows send up a shrill alarm.
The Scarecrow whirls to find the source of commotion
And the black crows flap wings, cawing in fear.
Out of the gloom, illuminated by orange moonlight,
A small, gaunt four-legged figure draws near.
The coyote pounces from the ether itself,
Tackling the scared little birds like bowling pins.
Disoriented, several crows hop up and take flight,
Only to crash softly into the Scarecrow’s shins.
The coyote is oblivious to the Guardian’s presence,
Consumed by an everlasting lust for food and blood.
The Scarecrow shakes, trying to control its anger;
Unchecked, the madness bursts forth in a torrential flood.
“So, you fear this creature made of sinew and fur,
But you do not fear the Guardian of the Night?”
Thus it delivers the coyote a bone-shattering blow,
And the bedraggled creature flees out of sight.
The crows hop and tremble and fluff their feathers,
Shaking their heads and settling back to the ground.
They cock their ugly heads at the Scarecrow, cawing,
And in their actions a warm revelation is found.
The pale moon clings to the horizon,
And the pink haze of the rising sun breaks the calm.
The defeated, tired Scarecrow climbs back upon its post
And a crow flaps up to rest in its outstretched palm.
When the sun disappears again, the Scarecrow rises
And tends to the flock of crows with nary a pause.
For it is not the Guardian of the Night, as it had supposed;
The Scarecrow is the Guardian of the Caws.