The villagers feared the woods,
They would not venture in,
For they knew,
With a visceral certainty,
If they did,
They would not return.
At night, the village stood silent,
Still and lifeless, like ruins.
Lights extinguished, people locked in homes,
Speaking only in hushed whispers.
They would not brave the streets at night,
Lest the fae steals them away.
When the day was bright,
And they thought they would not be heard,
The villagers told a story;
A story of a boy with golden hair,
Taken by the fae long ago;
A tragic tale of a boy misled.
They lured him into dark woods,
Promised him treasures and secrets
Whispered sweet nothings into unknowing ears,
Overjoyed at the prospect of the village’s misery
And before he knew, he was
Firmly ensconced in their trap
For years, he was tormented,
Locked in their heathen hold.
They reveled in his pain,
And the sorrow of the village.
Yet the boy could not be hurt,
For he believed himself in love.
A dark maiden, filled with evil thoughts,
Entrancing him, making him dance to her will
Reducing him to nothing more than a mere puppet
She had him hypnotized.
His greatest act of strength, the villagers cried,
Was his valiant escape.
The fae too, tell a story
Of a frightening world beyond
The comforting alcove they occupy;
Of a bright, beautiful maiden
And a boy with golden hair who strayed too far.
A tragic story of lost love.
A boy who wandered into the woods,
And loved and lived amongst enemies of his father.
Yet, as he morosely missed the world beyond,
He grew lonely and withdrawn.
Unable to watch him suffer,
She set him free with a lie.
Written by Maha Padala for MTTN
Featured Artwork by Shayeri Dutta for MTTN