Witch Work

By: Neil Gaiman

Star Rating:



Spoiler Disclaimer


This is a short two-page poem about an old witch, where she lives, and the things that she does.


Unlike the other pieces in this anthology, Witch Work is a short two-page poem about a witch. Unfortunately, poetry is a literary area in which I'm not very well-read. In fact, I've read very little poetry, probably because it isn't nearly as straightforward as narrative fiction, and usually contains hidden meanings which I have a difficult time parsing. For that reason, I don't know that I'm the best person to evaluate this poem, but since it's part of this anthology and I want to be as complete as possible in my review of it, I'll muddle through as best I can.

As with most poems, there were parts that I didn't fully grasp, which makes me wonder if the younger audience at which Under My Hat: Tales from the Cauldron, the anthology in which it if found is aimed will either. However, within the parts that did resonate with me, I found some well-crafted metaphorical imagery. My favorite lines were these:

"The clocks whispered time, which they caught in their gears.
They crept and they chattered, they chimed and they chewed.
She fed them on minutes. The old ones ate years."

I thought this was a very clever way to describe the passage of time. Even though I didn't necessarily get everything in the poem, it was an interesting piece nonetheless. It was the first thing I'd ever read by Neil Gaiman, and while it wasn't really long enough to make any kind of judgment on his writing ability, it certainly didn't turn me off to him as a writer either. So I guess that I would say it was a pretty decent read overall.


Neil Gaiman