pages Spell

by Ann de Forest

Published in Issue No. 50 ~ July, 2001

It was a time when vegetation grew at an astounding rate. We trudged
home through waist-high weeds, blinded by dandelion fuzz. Ivy
slithered up the walls as we watched. Leaves slipped under screens and
pressed against the glass like human hands. We slept. We woke in
darkness. We scraped the moss from under our fingernails. We watched
green tendrils burst through our mortar, acorns split and sprout on
our floors. We slept despite our fear that seeds would root inside our
own crevices. We woke again, then set to work breaking branches,
squelching buds. Birdsong — without melody — became background to our

Later reports claimed we slept one hundred years. Untrue. We labored
in that mildewed dark until we no longer knew how to distinguish sleep
from waking. Outside, far below, tangled roses bloomed. Their perfume
muddied our dreams.

You know the rest. The prince slashed through the briars. One kiss
woke us all. We never met our rescuer or the one whose swoon condemned
us. Quick black motion — a shadow? bird or leaf? — alerted us to
change. We looked up and took notice.





Our fat pupils shrank.

account_box More About

Ann de Forest lives and write in Philadelphia. Her fiction has appeared in Open City and Timber Creek Review and has been performed on stage for Writing Aloud, a series of actor-performed short fiction readings. She also writes frequently about architecture, design and mapmaking for various magazines and is working on a children's novel involving unusual old maps.