Emma J. Gibbon
She’s all 70s.
Floppy black hat and long shaggy hair,
Silver moon necklace swinging between
her soft breasts,
floating sleeves and stamping feet
as she twirls to Fleetwood.
But do not be deceived,
she’s all witch, conjure.
She’ll write your name on scraps in green ink,
piss on your paper,
wrap it up in a red wax ball
and then keep it
at her hip
in a small velvet bag
to stroke or squeeze.
She’s got you, boy.
Got you forever
or until the wax crumbles
or until she spins away, sick of you, into the night,
lucky that you’re not in a jar under her porch.
There’s moors and woods and the bayou and the swamps but what of the suburban witch? She calls to her distant coven from the immaculately manicured backyard, hollering a storm over the hedges and pools and lawns too perfect to exist. Her sisters hear her cry, know her power. They raise their faces in the moors and woods and swamps and the bayou and chant a response for her. Watch her conjure a storm to wash her enemies down the drain holes, smell the skunk-smell she leaves as she rearranges fate, taste the electricity on your tongue as she calls her lovers to bed. She’s iced tea and Tupperware and collecting the mail in fluffy slippers. She’s vacuuming and nail extensions and Xanax before noon but she’ll stir once, twice, thrice in that cauldron in her lemon kitchen. She curses and hex and bless you. Be cautious at the Parent-Teacher Association, watch your back at the grocery store, be careful who is listening at that play-date, for she is power and love and goddamn it, you have no conception who you’re dealing with.
Emma J. Gibbon is originally from Yorkshire in the U.K. and now lives in Midcoast Maine. She is a writer and librarian. Her stories have appeared in Wicked Haunted, a New England Horror Writers anthology andThe Muse & The Flame, an anthology of bizarre romance. A new story, “Sermon from New London,” is soon to appear on Toasted Cake podcast. Her poetry has been published in The Pedestal Magazine and shereceived an honorable mention in the 2017 Science Fiction & Fantasy Poetry Association Poetry Contest. Emma lives with her husband, Steve, and three exceptional animals: Odin, Mothra and M. Bison (also known as Grim). She is a member of the New England Horror Writers and the New England Speculative Writers.