I didn’t sleep the long years she slept. I paced the decade she was stolen. During the months I carried my firstborn, the rampion lay unharvested in the witch’s garden. Still, a spell was cast, and she nimbly danced away.
I sent her off dressed in scarlet, knowing the risks, her tendency to speak to strangers, her impulse to gather flowers, leave the well-worn path. She convinced me with her wheedling tone, her pleading. It was not the wolf I came to fear, but the woodsman and his axe.
Michelle Oppenheimer is a native New Yorker. She now lives in California and teaches English at an independent high school in the San Francisco Bay Area. She holds an MFA from the Bennington Writing Seminars and an MA and is ABD in American Studies, Brown University. Her work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and has appeared in the Bennington Review, Enizagam, Willa Cather Review, on The Manifest-Station, and is forthcoming in Literary Mama.
A Song for Michelle