Cassandra’s Tears

Tears of joy, tears of pain, we are reflected in the salt-water pools we create. So let us build a fleet of paper boats and sail them on our ocean of indecision, laughing at the wind-whipped white-crested waves that would wash over us, drowning us in our own despair, yet somehow never vanquishing us in the end.

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Location: Lennoxville, Quebec, Canada

Wednesday, June 23, 2004

Coyote Music

Coyote smoked his cigarette,
And as he watched the smoke
Rise spiralling to the stars,
I could tell he was planning a prank
From where I sat across the fire.

“We’re going to grab us some moonlight
And put it in a bag;
And when Nokomis finds it’s missing
We’ll just play wide-eyed,
You and I.”

“Coyote,” I said, “how in the world
Do you go bagging moonlight?
That’s like trying to capture a sigh
Or a ray of sunshine,
Or a passing breeze.”

“You just leave it to me,” he said
With that glint in his golden eye.
Then he turned up his furry face
And gave a howl into the night.
It echoed off the hills.

Then he whipped out a leather pouch
And opened it wide to the night;
And just as quick he drew the drawstring tight,
Tucked it back behind his belt,
And took another drag.

“You haven’t got anything there,” I said,
Smirking at him through the flames.
“Whyn’t you show me.”
“No way,” said he, “the light’ll get out
And there won’t be any trick!”

Just then Nokomis entered the circle,
A scowl on her ageless face
And something else, a smudge,
Darkening one cheek.

“Nanabozho,” she said, her voice like cool silver,
“Coyote,” she shouted, now the anger clear;
“Trickster,” she thundered, a vein pulsing in her neck,
“What have you done with my light?”

Coyote bayed at the stars,
Yipped like a kit,
Danced on his hind legs and laughed
And turned to me,
“Now do you believe?”

And I sat there, mouth agaping,
As the fire died down to coals,
As Nokomis waited for her answer
And the stars wheeled above
And the night owl hooted in the trees.

Coyote leapt up and danced;
He pulled out the leather pouch,
Tossing it from hand to hand,
And when Nokomis was fit to burst
He pulled the string,

And out burst a blaze of moonlight,
Silver and brilliant and clear,
And Nokomis burst into brilliance
And outshone the stars as she glowed,
Her light restored.

But of course you don’t believe me
Like I didn’t believe Coyote.
How
do you capture a moonbeam
And hide it in a rawhide pouch
On a starry, moonless night?


2 Comments:

Blogger DaVinci said...

I know how. You look at the moon and the light gets caught in your eyes.

12/31/2007 12:24 AM  
Blogger Eleanor said...

But the night is moonless.

12/31/2007 12:26 AM  

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