Tor.com content by

Holly Kybett Smith

13 Spooky Poems to Get You in the Mood for Halloween

It’s early evening, the sky is dusky and you’ve just gotten cosy on an old rocking chair, with a blanket on your knees and a mug of pumpkin spice at your elbow. Or, you’re lying awake blotchy-eyed at 2 am, fully intent on scaring yourself beyond sleep. Or, it’s nightfall and you’re huddled around a campfire in the whistling dark, knee-to-knee with your friends, speaking in wild gestures and stage-whispers… Whoever you are, wherever you are, you’re reading these words for a reason: you want to get your spook on.

But you’ve read Poe. In fact, you’ve probably perused dozens of works by dead white Victorian men. Time to change things up, so make yourself comfortable: Without further ado, here are thirteen haunting, fascinating poems by women to get you in the perfect mood for Halloween.

[Read more]

Five Dark Historical Gothics to Savor This Fall

By the pricking of my thumbs, something wicked this way comes…

…and we’re midway through the month of October, bringing with it longer, colder nights and the scent of apple cider on the breeze. It’s the time of year for traipsing around muddy pumpkin patches, telling ghost stories with a flashlight (or a “torch,” here in the UK) balanced precariously underneath your chin—and, of course, tucking into a good Gothic novel. But let’s say you’ve read the classics. You’ve already torn through The Haunting of Hill House; you want something more modern, less familiar than Dracula. Let’s say you would like to read something fresh; something that encapsulates the Gothic sensibility while taking you somewhere entirely new.

[Read more]

Becoming the Thing That Haunts the House: Gothic Fiction and the Fear of Change

It starts with a tragedy.

A murder. A betrayal. A loss. Perhaps a secret is taken to the grave and begins to fester there; perhaps a heart is broken and never quite repaired. The archetypal madwoman in the attic outstays her welcome and continues to haunt the space long after her heart has stopped beating. “Some say you can hear her heartbeat in the house’s walls,” an errant maid might whisper to the house’s newest occupants; or, “You can see her sometimes, wandering the halls at night.”

This is the conceit of the Gothic house: a person, a presence, who becomes so attached to their place of residence that, for better or worse, they cannot bear to leave.

[Read more]

13 Haunting Poems to Get You in the Mood for Halloween

It’s early evening, the sky is dusky and you’ve just gotten cosy on an old rocking chair, with a blanket on your knees and a mug of pumpkin spice at your elbow. Or, you’re lying awake blotchy-eyed at 2 am, fully intent on scaring yourself beyond sleep. Or, it’s nightfall and you’re huddled around a campfire in the whistling dark, knee-to-knee with your friends, speaking in wild gestures and stage-whispers… Whoever you are, wherever you are, you’re reading these words for a reason: you want to get your spook on.

But you’ve read Poe. In fact, you’ve probably perused dozens of works by dead white Victorian men. Time to change things up, so make yourself comfortable: Without further ado, here are thirteen haunting, fascinating poems by women to get you in the perfect mood for Halloween.

[Read more]

Our Privacy Notice has been updated to explain how we use cookies, which you accept by continuing to use this website. To withdraw your consent, see Your Choices.