A good witch, I think, as her voice rises
in story: their affair, his testosterone levels,
her childhood, and its want of love,
the gratitude for her lover’s love.
She seems about six foot two,
jaw etched of marble,
arms of steel, hands of iron,
and she fills the air around us
with tremor, something ominous,
yet vulnerable, as if she is saying,
I’ll tell you my secrets, like this gift of oil.
I take it, of course, I take it,
unscrew the top of the repurposed
wine bottle, smell deeply the lavender
and the garlic, her special brew.
I will tell you how I made it, she says,
because she holds no detail back.
She is the woman you’ve heard about,
or seen in movies, the one
who doesn’t give two shits,
the one who walks into a room
and steals it, and fills it
with laughter, and warning.
The woman whose tremor speaks
and says two things: come closer,
and I will tell you of love, of loss,
of picking oneself back up,
while at the same time you hear,
if you betray me, I will kill you.
And it all seems perfectly normal,
like the moment you always knew,
now unfolding. How what’s inside of you
was already unloosed in this goddess
of olive oil brewery, truth-teller,
all eyes on her, a wild, dangerous
animal uncaged, everyone nervous,
and eager to see what she will do.