My mind is blown!

Today I was going to post the poem I wrote for another project called Happy Neewollah and I decided to look up the pretend word neewollah, or Halloween backwards.

I almost lost it when I found out that there’s been an annual Neewollah Festival since 1919… and it happens in Independence, Kansas!

That is Kansas, not Missouri but I checked and this other Independence is only 3 hours away. I’m going to try and go this year, but if I can’t swing it this fast it’s on my calendar to go next year. Neewollah 2020 runs from October 23—31. You can read all about it here.

And now, for that silly poem.

Happy Neewollah!

Happy Neewollah!
May your pumpkins be merry
and your glowsticks bright.

Frolick in the fields
with your bobbing apple eggs
hunting leprechauns.

Wear your mistletoe.
No protection? No kissing
under the fireworks.

Taxes in July
while the shamrocks wilt away 
and the bunnies hide.

The turkeys this year
aren’t all birds on our tables—
some of them are us.

That’s 2020…
it’s been a Mad Hatter Year—

This year is backwards.
It’s the first Halloween where
un-masked is scary.

By Angela Yuriko Smith

Angela Yuriko Smith is a third-generation Ryukyuan-American, award-winning poet, author, and publisher with 20+ years in newspapers. Publisher of Space & Time magazine (est. 1966), two-time Bram Stoker Awards® Winner, and HWA Mentor of the Year, she shares Authortunities, a free weekly calendar of author opportunities at

2 thoughts on “Happy Neewollah!”
  1. So you were not the first Neewollah person! Hope you can attend the fest, someday. And as for the poem — some very clever stuff in it, especially about who is the turkey on the table … and scary are those without masks!

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