like stories we whispered under blankets


Tricksters lining every window, laughter-mixed


like stars we counted under cover of night


having lost one child, where do they go?


she was the witch in the well for the day,

bringing life to a fantasy my aunts made up

of drowned children calling out for help


Fill in the ditch so we don’t trip on loose earth

Fill in the ditch because I say so


because I cried all night, afraid of every shadow

your campfire dancing in ghouls’ light, quivering


our driveway where she stood, cackling and

waving her black fingernails in ecstasy, smirking


now she can see only halfway, can’t stand


haven’t since liked the cousin who scared me senseless,

where we were trapped in the garage with a chainsaw


I won’t forgive him, though I’m older now

and hiding by the air conditioner, smoking


drinking moonshine from a mason jar


in snow I lose my feet, but in ashes—


I hit the tree head-on