Saturday, November 2, 2019

The Wailing Witch of Weldon Pond

By T.L. Coston

There are no secrets in a village or town
When wagging tongues whisper
As darkness crowds in and sunlight fades out
For Fear has seeded a woeful child
Before it, Courage whimpers away - barren and fallow

Heed my warnings, stranger
The path you have taken, locals have forsaken
From harvest til solstice
This is a dangerous place
Beware of the Wailing Witch for this is her domain

No one knows from whence she came
Nor, can account when the woes began
For this tale is as old as the land
And the pond she’s claimed
Bears the family Weldon; a most unfortunate name

The Weldons made this place their home
Began a family, so the legend goes
Daughters, blessed be, were born - three
Oh, how those girls frollicked and danced
Not a care in the world when you’re not aged ten

Natives warned the Weldons of this forsaken place
For the witch has wailed for many of their race
Young and old who’ve made the mistake
Of venturing through the woods down the way
To her haunt - the pond - after harvest til solstice break

The Weldons dismissed this outlandish tale
For who can believe a barbarous breed
Whose motives are questionable to say the least
God-fearing Christians are not impressed
By heathens and their fables to which there is no end

But then came the night, regret clasped a mournful heart
So cold was the still, flames barely crackled in the hearth
When breath mingles with heat from an uncovered head
Death whispered forebodings that sleeping parents dread
Then came the wail that even the cold couldn’t bear

That’s when the parents shot up out of bed
The wailing was so loud, it could’ve wakened the dead
They dashed to their daughters, but only to see
Beds barren and cold from lack of body heat
“Where are the children?!” the mother looked around and screamed

When the witch wailed thrice, parents gasped in fright
Both ran out the door, unheeded without coat
They followed small footprints embedded in the snow
Through drifts and over ice, both battled wind and night
To the pond, where wails echo, into unearthly flight

As they crested a hill, about thirty yards away
A dark figure, silhouetted in starlight, danced and swayed
It was then they saw her face - a horrible disfigured face
This harpy snarled a toothless grin
Then wailed again and again, clawing at her tattered dress

The Weldon’s recoiled from this frightful scene
When the witch’s wailing morphed into a sickening glee
For this hag visaged a childish coquette
Mocking all that is holy and innocent
Mocking filial love and all it represents

The witch then pointed to the pond
She giggled, then clasped her putrid mouth
But evil cannot be suppressed; she stamped her feet
Then with an awful laugh, she splayed to mock the Trinity
This blasphemy, perfumed in rot and disease, engulfed the whole valley

Just as the witch mocked our lord
The three emerged from an icy vault
The Weldons screamed then jumped into the cold-cold pond
With shivering bodies and chattering teeth
They retrieved their dead daughters and began to grieve

The witch looked on in bemused satisfaction
For evil cannot commiserate, or compassion show
Only to take pleasure in others misfortune and woes
When the witch had feasted and filled
She walked away basking in parental wails

The Weldon’s woes did not abate
For the mother caught pneumonia and died a month later
The father vowed vengeance until his death
He hunted year after year until solstice end
Until, he too, was floating in his namesake's grave

Stranger, I beg you not to go down that path
Oh, I know it’s hard to believe
You’ll repent soon enough, you’ll see
When the Wailing Witch makes her call
And you end up face down in Weldon Pond

No comments: