The New Year raged with tempest, snow flung on howling winds until spring, when tornados churned structures, conjuring death. Summer’s heat brought drought, starvation, more death. New life ceased.
Hushed whispers followed Salvatora like slithering snakes.
Salvatora wrapped her shawl around her boney shoulders. She wished only to see him. Promised to another since the dawn of their births, he could never be hers.
He bathed in the pure lake, his muscles gleamed. He was chosen to lead. And his chosen would rule by his side.
The lake shriveled before Salvatora’s eyes. The oleander behind which she hid dropped its leaves, surrendering her to him.
He pitied. The frost of his expression coated her heart with icy cobwebs.
Salvatora left the village for the caves where the witches sowed seeds. On her way she viewed a beautiful youth enthralled by his reflection in the pond’s surface.
Her sisters labored in the shadows of hemlocks. She twisted free an olive branch, offering it for her return. From the shadows into the sun, they whirled and chanted.
Though late September golden daffodils bloomed and life’s seeds sprouted as Salvatora took up her distaff and spindle, casting aside a single love for the multitudes.