Come, Tituba

Tituba, ‘tis time to rise.
Come thee from thy grave.
Tis one year since last we caroused
‘mongst these Salem fools.
Help me tip the stone o’er my pet, Peeves.
Though his skeleton be small,
his rattling shall join ours this night.
His, the only kindness in that cellar,
waiting for the gallows to call.
No human came to visit that dank hole.
No other animal dared approach.
Feared the noose be looped
round their scrawny neck as well.
Only Peeves, my dearest black cat,
came and stayed,
curled atop my feet to the last.
Come Tituba, our metatarsals
brittle though they be,
shall haunt this town tonight.
Plod these desecrated streets
once again reminding all,
we were unequivocally wronged.

Written for Tuesday Poetics at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets around the globe. Today Lisa asks us to consider our pet peeves, some human characteristic that irritates us and then somehow connect that in a poem with a Halloween or Samhain theme. I admit. I struggled with this prompt and so took a bit of poetic license here. This poem is in reference to Salem, Massachusetts’ infamous witch trials and the scores of people who descend on Salem over Halloween night.

Tituba was the first girl to be accused of practicing witchcraft during the 1692 witch trials.

For those of you who’ve never been to Salem, it is replete with witch museums, wicca stores, and even a sculpture of Elizabeth Montgomery as her character in the television sitcom Bewitched. Lest one think that is the totality of Salem, it is also home to the amazing Peabody Essex Museum, PEM for short. For over 200 years it has been dedicated to collecting, preserving and showcasing compelling artwork throughout history and from around the world.

Photo from

20 thoughts on “Come, Tituba

  1. Ken / rivrvlogr October 26, 2021 / 1:38 pm

    Clever response, especially…
    “the stone o’er my pet, Peeves”


  2. Grace October 26, 2021 / 3:11 pm

    I have never been there – so interesting to see those witch museums. Love the voice, so witchy, carousing and haunting the town. You bring on the Halloween vibes!


  3. Ingrid October 26, 2021 / 3:11 pm

    I love where your poetic license took you, Lillian! I remember Tituba from The Crucible. I am pleased she had this companion, even in the grave.


  4. sanaarizvi October 26, 2021 / 3:16 pm

    Love this especially; “Though his skeleton be small, his rattling shall join ours this night.” Gorgeously rendered, my dearest Lillian 💝💝 Happy Halloween (in advance) 🙂


  5. msjadeli October 26, 2021 / 3:26 pm

    Lillian, I truly love your take on the prompt and imagine the pet, Peeves, “curled atop my feet to the last.” I hope Tituba and her friend (with Peeves) raise some havoc on this and every Halloween night for their wrongful deaths! May they one day rest in peace.


  6. Glenn A. Buttkus October 26, 2021 / 4:30 pm

    Wow, this scary as hell, rife with sarcasm, ire, anger, and sadness. Let’s hear it for Peeves. I assume it was a black cat with shining yellow eyes.


  7. Dora October 26, 2021 / 5:00 pm

    A clever and thrilling Halloween read, Lillian. I can hear those metatarsals on the pavement now!


  8. Beverly Crawford October 26, 2021 / 6:34 pm

    I hope the author, Titube and Peeves all have a delightful Halloween romp. It’s a delightful poem. Thanks for the extra info on Salem. I was not aware of the museum.


  9. robtkistner October 26, 2021 / 7:34 pm

    This was engaging, entertaining, and educational Lillian. Never knew who Tituba was. Being captive at times to the little boy in me, the name made me giggle briefly. 😏 I would have loved to stop for a visit in Salem. Got close twice having traveled once from Boston to Andover and once to Rockport — but never stopped to explore. Now it will remain a regret. Well written piece here my friend! 👍🏼🙂


  10. Xan October 26, 2021 / 8:01 pm

    A wonderful, original approach to a Hallowe’en write!


  11. SelmaMartin October 26, 2021 / 9:46 pm

    Love how you so cleverly talked about your pet named Peeve. Oh this is such a cool thing to do. I might do that some day. Thanks for sharing and inspiring me today. xo.
    Oh loved this poem creation. All of it. xo


  12. rogblog666 October 27, 2021 / 2:41 am

    great take on the prompt loved the poem.


  13. rothpoetry October 27, 2021 / 10:39 am

    A scary and sad story indeed Lillian. The atrocities we do to one another as humans is unbelievable. We never seem to learn to live and let live! Well done. I enjoyed your bit of history here.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Helen Dehner October 27, 2021 / 12:06 pm

    Lillian, this is a fascinating response to Lisa’s challenge. Cheers.


  15. calmkate October 28, 2021 / 4:45 pm

    a fascinating insight into this piece of history … glad there is a delightful art collection there now. Fitting pic for your gruesome talented write!


  16. writingwhatnots October 29, 2021 / 12:27 pm

    Scary, witty and quite wonderful to read.


  17. Gillena Cox October 29, 2021 / 5:53 pm

    Very interesting write. Thanks for the notes also

    Happy you dropped by to read mine



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