Ashes

by Louise Watson

Hansel and Gretel
Had starvation in their eyes
Scrawny children wandering about
Darkness suffocating
Alone and lost

I made sure,
As they rested,
That they were safe
And that surprise awaited them
When dawn finally broke.

They stumbled over
Their dreams alive
A gingerbread house
Sugar glazed windows
Candy decorated walls
Their smiles shone,
And I appeared;
Inviting them inside.

Twisted and gnarled was I
Feeding them everything,
Ignoring their painful bruises
And bleeding minds,
Because the past
Slowly resurrected
Before me.

Thankful, simpering, desperate,
Their eyes bleeding tears,
I decided to help,
I was in fact magical
But ever so ignorant.

Didn’t see their anger
Nor their knives
Oblivious to everything

Mixing a healing potion
In my scolding cauldron,
I didn’t see them creep up behind me
And splash!
I was pushed in

Agony tore me apart
Fire burning me to cinders
The last thing I saw
Was four merciless eyes.

Nothing more than a spirit,
I watched myself
Being burnt to ashes
Brushed into a box
And taken away.

My glittering remains
Were handed to their step-mother
And was greeted with
A cold cackle.

Her room is lined with boxes
Boxes of magical ashes.