Greenwitch (A Poetry Writing Competition Entry)

A Poetry Writing Competition Entry


1. Greenwitch

Power from the greenwitch, lost beneath the sea

~ Susan Cooper, ‘The Dark Is Rising Sequence’


Clanging, melodious, discordant:

the sound of greedy running bread-seekers.

They glance up a forbidden lane

They cannot rove there but imagination can:

up to weary cliff-tops where women pair hazel with twine,

seek to strip the branches to slim bareness.

Long overdue, the wishes wait,

and raindrops ring like chiming bells.


Brutal, broad, patient,

the figure ascends its podium.

Weighted with stone, its eyes speak of nothing

but tiredness, and the infinite toil

of being afterthought to the ocean.

The women light a fire, whistle their impatience.

Raw hazel is scorched by ancient flame.

The sea is hungry.


Soft prayers languish in the cold.

Stars watch the frayed land unblinkingly,

waiting for the morning to rear its head.

Kindness floats the voice of a girl.

The figure holds all the moments, biding its time.

Tenys trades human thanks for power, it is said.

The greenwitch holds its futile breath, closes its eyes,

waits for the plunge.



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