A Poem by EltonCamp

Author: EltonCamp
Created: April 18, 2014 at 04:42 pm
Upload Type: Poem, G (All)  
Category: Non Fiction | General/Other | General/Other
Upload Stats: 4 Stars by 1 users with 2 comments and 129 views

Thou Art a Witch  

Thou Art a Witch

By Elton Camp

In the 1690s a horrible, warning example we find,
Of the danger when church and state are intertwined
Those convicted as witches were twenty-nine
Though many more the Puritans came to malign

Cotton Mather had paved the way for such thought
He wrote pamphlets that his ideas on witches taught
It was held women more likely than men, Satan to serve
Women were lustful, weak and from right would swerve

Witch-hunting could considerable profit make
Since the witches’ land the colony could take
Most of the accused owned land
It could fall into another’s hand

Relatives of the Salem minister
Acted in ways that were sinister
The two girls made a strange sound
In the room, they threw things around

Under furniture they would crawl
And then roll themselves into a ball
“We are being pinched and feel pain.
And of pinpricks we also do complain.”

Other young women began to do the same
To their parents’ horror and great shame
“The devil’s most surely come around
And is now taking over our fine town.”

The first accused were a group of three
Who different from most proved to be
Sarah Good was a homeless old dame
Who to beg food to her neighbors came

Sarah Osborne didn’t the church attend
And had sex with an unmarried friend
Tituba was of the black race
So she had the music to face

After those three were sent to jail
Other “witches,” they began to rail
Next were women more undetectable
Because all were far more respectable

Though true church members they happened to be
Of a charge of being witches, they didn’t stay free
And then to nobody’s surprise,
Numbers accused began to rise

On hearing of the number on trial,
Cotton Mather then began to smile
“I knew witches were everywhere.
What happens to them I don’t care.”

Spectral evidence was taken as true
Witch spirit leaves body, evil to do
A vision or dream was thus held to be right,
Though the “witch” was elsewhere that night

That became the reason why
’Twas no help to have an alibi
Of convicted, none were set loose
All died by hanging from a noose

Also, an eighty-year old man refused to reply
Under the weight of stones was made to die
To be less like Europe they did strive
And didn’t burn any “witches” alive

People came to recognize the mistake
That the testimony given had been fake
Some still admired the goal
To put the church in control

For sure, no man’s life or property is safe
When under any church law they do chafe
Union of church and state all should fear
And so from that great evil do stay clear

© EltonCamp - all rights reserved

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Comments & Reviews

April 20, 2014
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I have been researching my family tree for about 15 years now. On my father's side, up popped the first Governor of Massachusetts Bay Colony! He committed the first 'revolutionary' act on American soil, by cutting the Cross of St George from the English flag (1630s). Thus giving New England its first flag (a pine tree was put in the blank later).

Among his other notorious doings, was that this Puritan was a co-founder of Salem. Need I say any more? But should you wish to read on, here's a site about him:


Thanks, I'll read it. That's very interesting. Elton

 EltonCamp replied on April 20, 2014

April 18, 2014
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I like this. I think the pace and metre of the poem maybe suffers a little because of the need to get the facts across, but I can't imagine many people doing so much better. It is a novel way to give a history lesson and also a warning for the future.

And of course what a tragic tale. Truly a dark time in a country's history.

Thanks. A union of government and religion is frightening. The witch mania continued until Cotton Mather's own wife was charged. The girls who brought the original charges against the first three ultimately admitted they were lying.

 EltonCamp replied on April 18, 2014

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