By Andrea Bledsoe King

When I was very young my father, Ralph Bledsoe, Jr. would read me this poem quite often. My dad, now age 72, has been smoking since he was 17 or 18 so when he read me this eerie poem, his deep, gravelly voice made quite an impact on me. Someday, I will have to record him reading this piece aloud.




The Griesly Wife

by John Manifold

“Lie still, my newly
married wife,
Lie easy as you can.
You’re young and ill
accustomed yet
to sleeping with a

The snow lay thick,
the moon was full
And shone across the
And the young wife
went with ne’er a

Barefooted to the door.
He up and followed
sure and fast,
The moon shone clear
and white.
But before his coat
was on his back
His wife was out of

He trod the trail
where’er it turned
By many a mound and
And still the barefoot
track led on,
And an angry man was

He followed fast, he
followed slow,
And still he called
her name,
But only the wild
dogs out in the hills
Yowled back at him

His hair stood up
along his neck,
His angry mind was
For the track of the
two bare feet gave out
And a four-foot track
went on.

Her nightgown lay
upon the snow
As it might upon the
But the track that
led from where it lay
Was ne’er of human

His heart turned over
in his chest,
He looked from side
to side,
And he thought more
of his blazing fire,
Than he did of his
griesly bride.

And first he started
walking back
And then began to
And his quarry
wheeled at the end of
her track
And hunted him in

Oh, long the fire may
burn for him
And open stand the
And long may the bed
wait empty:
For he’ll never see it



By admin

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *