local_library Elbow Witch

by Benjamin Smith

Published in Issue No. 201 ~ February, 2014

A hag lives in the woods,

A woman with awl elbows.

Blind as a bat but a cannibal;

Shears flesh from the bone with

Sharks teeth, steals

Children from the villages.


When I was a kid they told me:

Don’t go into the woods –

She sets traps there, casts

Cobwebs in the branches.

She has a sister, they say;

Blind as a bat but a cannibal.


One day, a friend and I crossed

The forbidden river,

Peaked through her windowpane.

On the table she had dead rabbits, raw,

Skin peeled into buckets. We

Kept to our own side after that.

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Benjamin Smith is 28 years old and grew up in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire. He has spent the past three years traveling around Latin America and currently lives in Guadalajara, Mexico with Karla Katmandu who makes him get out of bed. His poems have previously appeared in: The Recusant, The Cannon's Mouth, The Empty Mirror and The London Grip.