Tuesday, January 25, 2011



They burned a witch in Bingham Square
Last Friday afternoon.
The faggot-smoke was blacker than
The shadows on the moon;
The licking flames were strangely green
Like fox-fire on the fen ...
And she who cursed the godly folk
Will never curse again.

They burned a witch in Bingham Square
Before the village gate.
A huswife raised a skinny hand
To damn her, tense with hate.
A huckster threw a jagged stone--
Her pallid cheek ran red ...
But there was something scornful in
The way she held her head.

They burned a witch in Bingham Square;
Her eyes were terror-wild.
She was a slight, a comely maid,
No taller than a child.
They bound her fast against the stake
And laughed to see her fear ...
Her red lips muttered secret words
That no one dared to hear.

They burned a witch in Bingham Square--
But ere she swooned with pain
And ere her bones were sodden ash
Beneath the sudden rain,
She set her mark upon that throng ...
For time can not erase
The echo of her anguished cries,
The memory of her face.