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  1. Witches of Lila Spring

    They blew last night through the trees 
and woke me up -
    lady spirits crazily grazing
    my forehead with their shivers.

    I had watched the blue smoke spiral up,
    clouding the night - ink-black, so dark they could hide
    rusty blades in dry beds of pine needles.

    They dribbled strychnine in the well, they say -
    after years of putting up jars
    of tinctures to brew over winter,
    and kill in the spring.
    Young women and unborn babies.

    They had made the chickens sick,
    the crops frost over,
    the children starve.
    And when the young head mistress
    hung herself in the school yard,
    they found them in the Forest
    gathering mushrooms,
    wearing dark, hooded cloaks.

    They were living in the Church, they said -
    burning sage at the altar,
    dancing in the pews,
    drinking the holy water.

    But, all that is Past now.

    Look in, to the blue flames
    of the log fire in your cabin.
    Sleep restless, cold in your bed.
    Dream, if you can, of dead winking flowers-
    for all around, Night is collapsing
    with shy, silvery laughter
    and wolf howls.