The Witch

by Stephen Paden

I am in the sun
surrounded by the blood-lust crowd
chained to a beam in the center of the earth

their taunts become louder
surrounded by the night’s embrace
flickering devils on pallid faces

their fingers stretched out at me
they begin their chant
over and over again, “Guilty”

the black heavens deaf
the embers grow
burning and nipping at soul and body

“Guilty,” they cry.
“You have been judged.”
“God has abandoned you this day.”

the voices give way
to searing flesh and crackling wood
I try to scream, but my voice is smoke-stolen

I am in the sun
surrounded by a blood-lust crowd
quenched in eternal fire

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