They were only trying to scare me. But I was afraid they would anger it. I imagine their story started as an explaination for being out so late at night. They would not hear me explain.
I had never thought of myself as a witch. I only ever wanted to keep the curse away.
They came upon me with all manner of abuses until my head and belly felt ready to split. I saw a bone from my ribs come out through my dress, another from my arm. I could not bear their eyes upon me. And all the while, the curse clawed at my mouth and other parts -- I dared not speak in my defense, lest it get in.
At last I am too weak, and it comes like birthwaters rushing out of the world and into me. It washes the pain out.
Now that I welcome it, the curse lifts me away from the suffering of my flesh and teaches new ways and patience. It promises I'll have again the babies and husbands lost to me. And more.
They did not send more children for a long time.
But I know patience.
Should pale death with arrow dread Make the ocean caves our bed Though no eye of love might see Where that shrouded grave shall be Thou! who hear'st the surges roll Deign to save the suppliant soul