The business of witches is one of harvesting truths like plants of predicting babies and midwifing divorces, taking midnight phone calls from love haunted sisters and keeping omens of death to ourselves. We are not of our parents; the land made us, and cats and rats and rabbits dance in our footsteps. Young though I was and unable to know why the houses frightened me or why his touch awakened mine, I did know the business of witches was to know things, and be silent. Witches have to remember it all so you can sleep, and forget: the humming of poisons from your back garden, curses of small feathers dropped in your path, the divination of dead things in a lover's eyes. No good Christian home with children and mortgages and television lights to keep out ancient darkness would ever be enough to swallow me. The land made me and the business of witches is to be worthy of burning
Joel LeBlanc is a poet, pastry chef, medical herbalist and freelance writer. His poems have appeared in numerous literary journals including Semaphore Magazine, Poetry NZ, and Takahe. Joel lives in New Zealand with his husband, 4 dogs and 2 cats – some of which may or may not have once been human.