The Village of Crone

The Village of Crone

A Poem by David Lewis Paget

I went for a walk in a farmer’s field
That once was a village street,
The cobbles were buried under the weeds
And scattering ears of wheat,
I wondered what had become of them,
Had they just faded away,
And left the buildings to tumble down
In disrepair and dismay?

Here the occasional chimney stood
Its flu still blackened with soot,
That once had shone with a rosy glow
Reflected by someone’s foot.
And there the remains of a hearth still lay
Where mother had cooked the food,
And once there had been a child at play
Outside, where a swing had stood.

I found the remains of an old stone slab
Worn down by the passage of feet,
The entranceway to the Inn they had
In the days when life was sweet,
But something had come to sweep it away
To level it all to the ground,
And I was struck by the silence there,
Marked by the absence of sound.

I finally came to the cemetery
That sat alongside a wood,
A pitiful forest of standing stones
Each marked with a name, but crude,
And in the middle a pitch black stone
That sat at odds with the rest,
‘Here lie the remains of the Witch of Crone,
May she burn in Hell, Bad Cess!’

It seemed then that the villagers had
Their taste of evil ways,
Before some force had hurried along
To see each building razed,
For then I stumbled across a stone
That lay, each shattered piece,
As if it was struck by lightning there
When he was just deceased.

I began to gather the pieces
Like a puzzle in that field,
And started to put it together, 
See what secrets it would yield,
‘Here lies the Village Witch Finder,’ said
The sorry tale at last,
His name, ‘Nathaniel Binder’, carved
Before that final blast.

Then once that the tale was there to tell
I could hear a distant growl,
Deep in the wooded trees nearby
Like some grim and ancient howl,
And the black stone in that cemetery
Began to glow so bright,
As smoke poured off from its surface then,
Making me weak with fright.

I never went back to that farmer’s field,
Or that vast, unholy ground,
But I passed just once the village pond,
A hole, and not to be found,
The earth had opened, swallowed it up
In a time of great despair,
And there by the edge of that ancient pond
The remains of the ducking chair.

David Lewis Paget

© 2017 David Lewis Paget

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Another fantastic poem and fun to read.

Posted 1 Year Ago

A amazing tale written my friend. I liked the journey to learning and knowing the truth. Thank you David for sharing the amazing poetry.

Posted 5 Years Ago

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As KT said, this truly a story in rhyme. I love it! Not too many attempt a travelog, moving from place to place, from thought to thought. Slowly building to a crescendo, with a surprising close. This could be a great lead-in tale to a movie short.

Posted 6 Years Ago

Amazing from start to finish as you, the master story teller, has brought to readers an intriguing story that leaves no "stone" unturned! Oh my, I can just see that glowing stone and the one that was but crumbled bits.
I suppose the ducking chair was evidence of the deeds of the witch, and of her punishment!
Another excellent story in perfect poetic rhyme and form!

Posted 6 Years Ago

Another very interesting read. It made me think of some of the small burial grounds here with olden tipped stones and no one to care for them any more. Perhaps a witch or old crone is in one of them. Interesting tale. Valentine

Posted 6 Years Ago

another fantastic piece. I love your poems they are short stories in rhyme and I can imagine every detail, so well worded your work - :)

Posted 6 Years Ago

i always look to read your story/poetry sir ..always a delight! tho the story line is strong the middle seems to get a bit rocky in the reading ..perhaps a stretching of syntax a bit minor edit V7 L2 hear not heard ...
love the closing with the dunking chair .. brings a historical reality to your stroll trough the fields ;)
ps i would love to stumble upon such a place .. the call to explore would be irresistible for me ... but from the sounds of it i would most likely not return either ;}

Posted 6 Years Ago

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7 Reviews
Added on March 23, 2017
Last Updated on March 25, 2017
Tags: chimney, soot, cemetery, fright


David Lewis Paget
David Lewis Paget

Moonta, South Australia, Australia



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