Halloween greetings from! Story & art: Katy Towell. Narration: Tim Jones.

I am here. I am everywhere
Every place you’ve been I have waited
Every face you’ve seen I have worn
I have not one name but thousands
I come on the wings of an epidemic
Of a massacre
A lone scream in the night
Announced by the distant thunder of a war
or the bleat of the slaughtered calf
I visit the dying in their burning skin
Devour the bodies of the sick
I crush the hearts of the hopeful as I dance on the backs of the weak
Your greatest fears are my delight
With your cries you invite me in
I am the betrayal you could not have seen
The killer you thought you knew
One day I will be your mother or your father or your friend
Another day I will be your neighbour, or perhaps I’ll work through you
There are monsters hiding in your closet
There are ghosts beneath your bed
The dream you feared was real
Was real
These are gifts to you from me
I love you in my little way
With your suffering I am alive!
Can’t you hear the music on the wind?
Don’t you recognize the tune?
Is it you my friend, your struggling?
Your spirit torn limb from limb?
But I am not death
Death is your deliverer
Death looks to me with sorrow in his eyes and asks, “Why must you do this?”
My answer remains unchanged
I do what you cannot
No end is swift under my watch
Mercy is a mistake I correct
I am peace destroyed and eyes forced open
The ragged ring around your neck
I am your secret wish for others
I am their secret wish for you
I have not one name but thousands
But you... you may call me Agony
And I am pleased to make your acquaintance

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