313 words (1 minute read)

Hansel and Gretel

00:07:08 :: 00:08:00

Nibble-nibble, Mouse,
all about the house.
Enter in and then
come meet the oven
face-to-face with its
flaming, lapping tongues
laughing for the feast
it sees you’ll provide.
Do not think your frame,
though bonny and gay,
is meat enough here.
No, these flames have long
watched the with at work:
fattening children;
fattening herself;
feeding this fire
only scraps of trees,
an occasional
spattering of fat.
Oh, to feast on fat!
Just once before the dark,
before the flames die:
to consume this house
(this elaborate,
delicious mouse-trap);
to consume the fence
of gingerbread girls
with strawberry curls;
to consume the witch
who just feeds and feeds,
and is only greed.
Let her be consumed
by her greed, by me:
cackling and crackling
finally made one,
patience rewarded.
Oh, to melt the flesh
and to crack the bones
and to taste the fate
these long winters stored!
Oh, to bite the nails,
breathe in the hair,
and feel her claw at bricks!
Oh, to be her greed
and swallow her whole!
To be paid for work
of indentured years!
Play with fire and
find yourself burned through;
if you disrespect
this noble ancient,
it will turn on you;
all hunger, all greed. 

Next Chapter: The Three Snake Leaves