A Folk Tale
by Patrick Meighan

(for my mother, who suffered from Alzheimer's)

Those nights you
Put me to bed with,
“I'm not your mother.
I'm the witch that ate her.”
You'd pretend to cackle,
I'd pretend to shriek.
Even the cat was in
On the joke. We lived in
Fairy tales of Slovakia,
Your strange homeland,
Of naughty children
Lost in woods of werewolves,
Witches. Today I burn
A straw Morana for you,
A torch to light our way
From this darker wood.

Illya's Honey Literary Journal

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