New Welsh Review

The Reckoning

Poem by Carrie Etter

PUBLISHED ON: 26/01/21


TAGS: fairytale, horror, wildlife

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Whether the fog lowered or rose,


with it came the wolves,

their white-and-grey fur merging

with the dense air.

They came after the bloodletting;

they came in the midst;

they came to scavenge,

to take the stray tabby,

to take the hare,

to take the dawdling boy

limb from limb.

We would hear a shriek and look out

and see white.

We would hear a cry and not know

what animal and the children

would whisper their guesses –

fox? mouse? little Maria?

We would peer into the fog

and see yellow eyes flash close, closer.

We would stoke the fire

and gauge how many days

the wood, the fog could last.



Carrie Etter’s latest publication is the prose poetry pamphlet, The Shooting Gallery (Verve, October 2020). She is Reader in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University.