Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Tuesday Poem - The Witch Speaks

It's Flash Fiction week this week and New Zealand's Flash Fiction Day this Friday, so to celebrate, many of the Tuesday poets are publishing flash fiction on their Tuesday Poem blogs.

The Witch Speaks

They always want a tower, no matter the heating bills, the inconvenience. All right for you, I say, but how is Mrs P going to vacuum those 159 stairs? Sure, there’s a good summer aspect – they sit on the window sill to dry their hair. But winter’s a killer. Starts my bronchitis off thinking about it.

The hair – did I mention the hair? Never think to stoop down and unclog the drainhole. Oh no, that’s Mrs P’s job. Puts you off hair to see it all matted and sludgy with soap. The time it takes, too – the French braids, the dancer’s bun, the just-out-of-bed do that takes an hour to get right. Whole weekends dyeing it morning-sun-kissed-peach or chestnut-with-rosy-dawn-highlights. Then the tears. It’s too peach. It’s just brown. I hate my life.

I’m putting my foot down. I’m breaking the story rules. There’s going to be less drama and subtext, more happy families. The boy can knock at the front door, ask after your mother, my arthritis. You can both walk the dog. Go to the deb together. Break up and whinge on Facebook. Make up and update your relationship status.  

Your father can take his train set up to the tower. He’ll enjoy the birdlife. Your mother can stop worrying and go back to her Book Club and yoga.

There’s a hair toss and whatever, flung over one fashionably bony, bare shoulder, flaunting a new tattoo. Calls me a bitch, an old witch. She’s right, of course.

Love you, she calls at the door and I hear her pause and wait for the echoed answer.

Catherine Bateson, June 2012

Hop across to the Tuesday Poem hub where editor, Michelle Elvy, has published a wonderful piece by Sian Williams - featuring a dark fairytale element. You'll love it!  From the hub, explore other tuesday poems and flash fiction pieces.


AJ Ponder said...

The witch too old to be bothered with drama queens and other assorted rapunzels - when did we arrive at this sorry state ;)
very cute.

Michelle Elvy said...

I really like the tone and pace of this. "I'm putting my foot down. I'm breaking the rules." Yes! Really fun!

Michelle Elvy said...

I really like the tone and pace of this. I tried to say this once already but now I'm saying it again. Changing the rules -- great! I like it!