come upon the witch’s house. It’s made of candy: gumdrops and peppermint sticks and chocolate chips. Hansel and Gretel are not exactly starving, having snacked on blackberries and almonds growing along the way. Besides, Gretel plans to be a dentist, and Hansel has a hankering for bacon and eggs at the moment.

To their surprise, the bright colors of the house change before their eyes. Gone, the sparkle of sugar on the roof, replaced by the sizzle of bacon shingles. The door is no longer a chocolate bar, but an oblong of hash browns. Eggs, over easy and still steaming, fill the window boxes. The window shutters are buttered pieces of toast.

The witch watches. A master in the art of attraction, she knows how to harness the senses, direct the attention, rein in the brain. No longer wary, the siblings approach.


greengage plum
the sweet glow
of desire