An old tradition says
a witch cannot pass a juniper
without stopping to count each
branch and thorn. if she loses
count, she must start all over again.

The Witch Next Door
When she moved in, no one knows.
No truck arrived to deposit
her belongings that I can recall --
yet one morning, there she is
puttering in the front garden as leaves
golden under her touch
and frost reddens the woodbine on the fence.
Chill breezes chuff outward from her yard
to freckle the leaves on my old maple
and sere my grass where it touches hers.
How has she found me after all these years?
For uncounted seasons I've lived in peaceful
anonymity on this street.
She smiles and greets me
when I leave the house each morning
as though we are old friends --
but we are not.
Soon junipers will sprout by each front door
and I will be unwelcome once again. 

Pamela J. Jessen
If you have any thoughts on this poem, 
Pamela J. Jessen would be pleased to hear them.