October 4, 2016

A Poem by Jennifer Criss: "Come Hither"


Jennifer Criss graduated from Ball State University with a minor in Creative Writing. She is currently collaborating on an anthology for older adults and helps lead a writing support group. Jennifer writes mostly short stories but has discovered a love for writing poetry. Her poetry has been published in Poebita Magazine, Whispers, The Poet Community, NY Literary Magazine and Indiana Voice Journal. Her work also appears in several print anthologies. She now works at Ball State, is a busy mother of two girls, and the art editor at Indiana Voice Journal.











Come Hither. . .

She stares out the window, heavy curtains pulled back,
Yellowed teeth in a snarl, dressed all in black.
She cackles and sings to herself with glee,
"Come to me children, come hither to me."
Her beady eyes glare, her hairy chin against the glass,
Willing the children to come - every boy, every lass.
She wrings her hands knowing what she'll soon see,
"Come to me children, come hither to me."

And soon they amble down the dead-dark street
In their pajamas, no shoes on their feet,
Unaware of what would soon lie ahead,
After all, aren't they still in their beds?
She wills them up the sidewalk and by the old oak tree,
"Come to me children, come hither to me."
Through the gates, and up to her door,

Dazed children – fates sealed and no more.

In the morning, parents panicked as discoveries were made:
No children in their bedrooms, only wrinkled sheets where they'd laid.
The village children would never again be free,
"Come to me children, come hither to me."
She sang over and over and danced around,
Knowing the tasty boys and girls would not be found.
On to the next town, she could hardly wait,
to taste the plump children on her dinner plate.
"Oh sweet babes, I cannot wait to meet thee!
Come to me children, come hither to me!"


~Jennifer Criss








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