All the other roles were taken: sweet, lost
Hansel and Gretel, negligent or greedy father
and stepmom. All parts gone to others
except the witch,
the old one with the scary laugh.
How does a ten-year old know how to play old?
But she does . . . finds a scarf to cover her hair,
adds a stick and a slow moving silence.
Gets the part no one else wanted
and keeps it hidden for years
then, when no one is looking,
she shakes out her greyed locks, notes the wrinkles,
now real, and heads out alone, showing the world
what she has become: an old woman
inside and out, curious about each be-witching moment,
wondering how the story really ends.
Kathleen Phillips lives on the east side of Milwaukee. She writes at a desk overlooking a busy street, far from the country life where she and her husband raised their family. A full life includes family, traveling and writing companions, old and new friends... and always, new adventures.