Those Old Witch Trials

Those old hags we call witches,
Crone like, snaggle toothed,
Sunken cheeked, poor,
Having made a capital offense,
Britain deeming it heresy,
Pope Innocent VIII in 1484,
Those poor old women,
Victims of an evil and unnecessary law.

Western Europe came to condemn,
Those old hags, their cats their familiars,
Proof of a woman practicing witchcraft,
Unfortunate women tortured,
With pilnie winks; thumb screws,
Caspie-Claws a leg iron heated over a brazier,
The supposed witch forced to confess,
A crime she was not guilty of,
Her heart actually full of love.

Supposed Witches of 1645 - 1646,
Preachers to seek out heresy,
Matthew Hopkins coming to help,
He himself an unsuccessful lawyer,
To spread the fear like a disease,
Putting to death 68 people in Bury St Edmunds,
His fellow witch hunters pleased,
And when he had 19 hanged,
Chelmsford had secret fears,
For witchcraft was a curse of the devil,
And the devil had many plans up his sleeve.

Margaret Read, a condemned witch,
Supposedly having leapt from the flames,
And striking the wall, Kings Lynn,
The world now knowing her name,
Marking the spot, of a woman of supposed sin,
The most famous being Mary Sutton of Bedford,
Being put to a swimming test;
If she floated, she was guilty,
If she sank, she was innocent,
That famous old test,
That never proved she was unlike the rest.

Hopkins reign of terror of 300 executions,
Women having iron rivets driven through their joints,
Witch hunters trying to make a point,
Discovered in graves in St. Osyth in Essex in 1921,
A man of pure evil now somewhere unforgiven,
The old ways still driven,
A supposed witch called Mother Shipton,
Having lived in Knaresborough in Yorkshire,
A psychic now believed, her predictions of,
Cars, planes, trains and the telegraph,
A woman remembered to this day,
Psychics knowing the future,
Seeing the world and its way.

The Pendle Witches are also remembered,
Three generations of one family,
To be marched through the streets,
By witch hunters they never wanted to meet,
This in Lancaster in 1612, they being hanged.
And in 1736 acts against witchcraft,
Was repealed, although not carried through,
For witch hunting never was completely stopped,
A alleged male witch found drowned in a pond,
In Headingham in Essex, and in 1945,
An elderly farm labourer found with a cut throat,
A man always cold without his coat,
In Meon Hill in Warwickshire,
The man locally reputed to be a wizard,
The witch hunter cold in taking a life.

Hocus Pocus, toil and trouble,
Those witches to be hanged,
And drowned and put in rubble,
Their magic potions a sham.
Their work for the devil,
Shall always be stopped,
Their evil deeds and ways,
To be like the farmer in the field,
Reaping those crops.
And when you see that hag,
Know her powers will be against you,
Her body dressed in rags,
And her magic will poison you,
And leave your corpse,
Cold, dead and black and blue,
Her cold heart with all its trickery,
To be left out in front of the crowds,
Shouting 'We will never forgive you,
For what you do! '

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Comments (251)

Very nice poem.Such wonderful lines.
Sleep together lovingly in the arms of God I am getting the sense of spiritual love. I rated your poem 10. Thanks and regards.
they hit me with stones as on a crazy woman   that defends his heart of sadistic blows   all their lies how to enjoy the circles in the water and I cried like a wind eagle   who passes his cry through invisible rains tears of suffering
A brilliant poem with lovely images that cheers a heart. I enjoy it immensily. Thank uy for sharing
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