Old Wives Tales

by Carol Casey

Old wives’ prattle, rattle tales

from mouths drained of succulence.

So, what’s their use?

Words crack as they erupt,

ear-stopping, witch-like,

What’s at stake?


Listen to be nice, condescend.

To hear the sea as from a

shell of herself rings too true,

splinters shelter, leaves you naked,

stalking shadows, gelding sunlight

into something shallow 

enough to bear.



It may save you.


Carol Casey lives in Blyth, Ontario, Canada. Her work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and has appeared in The Leaf, The Prairie Journal, Synaeresisand others, including a number of anthologies, most recently, Much Madness, Divinest Sense, Tending the Fire and i am what becomes of broken branch.