Once upon a very long time ago, there lived a great big pumpkin. I can remember walking down that old country road and seeing that poor old pumpkin just sitting in the pumpkin patch. Nobody else wanted him because he was just too big and it would have been too much work to clean and carve him. Ah, old Jack. He sure was a handsome pumpkin.
I decided right then and there, that I just had to have that pumpkin. I picked up that pumpkin and I carried him all the way home, all by myself. He was a very heavy pumpkin and I just about broke my back getting him home but, I made it safely.
I lived in an old log cabin all by myself. I was a lonely old fellow, way back then. It was just me and my old black cat, Bumpkins. Me and Bumpkins go way back. He was just a tiny kitten when he showed up at my doorstep one Halloween night, many years ago. And, do you want to know something? Bumpkins was the only one that has turned up at my doorstep since.
Over the years, I bought bags and bags of candy. No-one came. I was sad to see all that candy go to waste, but more than anything else, I had wanted to see some happy faces around here. I had all but given up on Halloween this one year. I had decided that I wasn't going to carve a pumpkin that year! I had also decided that I wasn't going to shell out any candy. I was bound and determined that I wasn't going to celebrate Halloween that year. That was until I had spotted Old Jack in that pumpkin patch.
I couldn't believe no one had picked that huge pumpkin from the patch. As soon as I had spotted Old Jack, I knew that this Halloween was going to be the best ever.
Old Bumpkins quite approved of my choice for that year's jack-o-lantern. As soon as Bumpkins laid eyes on Jack, he let out a loud happy meow. It was love at first sight.
Bumpkins and I tenderly carved Old Jack out with care. He turned out perfectly. His teethy smile radiated a special glow when I set him outside on my front porch and lit his candle. I had no sooner lit the candle and there, right on my front doorstep were all kinds of happy faces around me. I was so happy myself that I had tears coming out of my eyes as I shelled out the candy to them.
Old Jack saved my Halloween that year. I kept the seeds from that there pumpkin and the following spring I planted them in my garden. Every year now, all my jack-o-lanterns are a part of Old Jack and I've never had a lonely Halloween since.
Written by Debbie Williamson
(published in the EMC Record News, Smiths Falls, Ontario - October 25, 1992)