Moon at Midnight – Part XXXXX (day 2024)

(part XXXXIX)

When I returned home it had been decided that
One of the young women who had just come of age
Would take Runs Wild, Long Arrow’s eldest son,
To be her man
There was a bit of to-do about the village
As everybody began preparing
For the potlatch
They were different
Then what I knew as weddings
The host, in this case Long Arrow,
Would bestow gifts upon the guests
Based on their rank
In our own way we prepared some special things
For the family was very close to us
Willow was nearly every day helping Mercy
She would come home at night
And I could see her hands
Were worked to the bone making something or other
I would laugh kindly as I’d get
Some Buffalo fat and rub her hands for a while.

The potlatch was quite special for me
It was a bit similar to the ceremonies
I had witnessed the year before
But there were a lot of symbolic gestures
That I had to ask Willow the meanings of
I asked Willow if this is what it was like for her
When she took her man
And she smiled and squeezed my hand
And Moon Cow, who was right next to me too,
Winked at me and exaggerated about the grandeur
Of her ceremony
Explaining to me how ten thousand people arrived
From all the hills in every direction
And the ceremony lasted
For one full moon cycle
I only half disbelieved him
For I’d believe two moon cycles were even too short a time
To celebrate in honour of Willow
I had heard many times how honourable
Willow and Moon Cow’s father had been.

We stayed up late with drums and fire
And lots of dancing that everybody loved
It seemed to come and go in waves
The beat of the drums, size of the fire,
Sweat on my forehead
Ecstasy like I had never experienced before
I’d watch Willow dance with the other women
A dream for me, watching her smile and move
Showcasing the steps she had memorized as a young woman
It was a true celebration of souls uniting
Supported by the entire family,
I stuffed myself silly
Because Mercy had some girls
Endlessly circling with more and more food
For everyone to eat.

The next morning as I woke
The mid-Spring frost still hung heavy
And little curls of smoke
Ascended from the big fire
That had powerfully burnt the night before
I could see everywhere around
There were little shelters that we had erected
Preparing for the potlatch
For the visitors that had come
Which, to be truthful, wasn’t that much
On account of us being more isolated
From our friendly tribes
It’s hard to get word out when nobody’s out there
I walked the village
Lost in what seemed to be a dreamworld
Saying hello to the early risers I’d see rummaging around
Wondering to myself what it would be like
If Willow and I had a ceremony
When I came back inside our teepee
Willow was boiling some delicious smelling tea
And I sat down and just watched her for a while.

part XXXXXI

Moon at Midnight – Part XXIII (day 1997)

(part XXII)

The land Mountain Chief had decided to camp at for the winter
Was full of buffalo and other small game
Looking for cover in the trees for the cold season
The flat land wasn’t too nice for them
We teamed up the neighboring camp of Blackfoot
Who’s chief took Mountain Chief’s sister to bed
Seeing all of the riders together
Gave me a chill up and down my spine
But it was beautiful to watch the skilled riders
Chase the buffalo down a buffalo run
Jumping to their deaths
Must have been houndreds of them
To skin and to smoke.

Moon Cow and I set to work at once building as many
Smoke houses as we could
In the fashion that I had first built with him
A few moons ago now
Some of the other people dug giant but shallow holes
Which they then put sticks beneath
Then a makeshift frame structure
That they layered buffalo onto
And on top of this
They lay the hides they had just skinned.

It was a massive undertaking and some days
I would ride up to the top of the cliff
And just look at all the people below working
Imagine how the buffalo had jumped with the stampede
Each day I would do at least three loads of newly smoked meat
Back to the camp we had
Wild Willow had set a home close by
Open air but many hides and blankets to keep us warm
Through the whole night
That we lived in while we were working
It was nice to have her warm body
To sleep next to every night
It was food for my soul.

Every night both of our people
Would get together around a large fire
And celebrate the harvest
The bounty we were all so thankful for
To keep us through the winter
Everybody was happy, laughing, dancing
I would watch Willow and Lily
Dance around with all their sisters
As the drums kept beating into the fresh night air
When she would come find me
She would be covered in a fine layer of sweat
And exhilarated by the night
I would join her at times
Trying to watch the other men
To see how they danced
So I could learn and feel like I belonged more.

When I would wake
There would still be smoke coming from the fires
But more importantly
Smoke would still be inside our smoke houses
That Moon Cow and I had stoked
Before we had gone to our beds
I would add more logs to each one
And when I returned to camp
Willow had special tea for me
With fried buffalo and eggs.

It was a lot of work
But methodical
Which I enjoyed
I definitely wasn’t as skilled as the others
At cutting and skinning
But I was good, and fairly quick
And my good knife definitely helped me
Some of the others used modified axes
That seemed to work fairly good
It was a city for those long days
Bustling with people here and there
Trading and helping
And I met many relatives
Ever curious who the white man was with Willow
It was clear that she was loved by many
And I could also see a few jealous Blackfoot
Looking at me, dressed in a mix of leather and cotton clothes
Wondering what I had that they didn’t
But Willow had told me this is just their way
That she had turned down some widowed elders
After Lily’s father had passed,
Content to help her brother and care for Lily
I wondered which ones.

part XXIV

Captain Black Gun (day 1371)

Never alone he traveled the Seven seas
In sound and perfect harmony
Like wisdom is a memory
Clear blue days were sanctimony.

For our strong Captain whose sea was his own,
We fought together – bonded right strong,
Aligned was his order at once to every cause,
Slave to the Master, Master of us all.

Lost in distances were clear mountain peaks
Of a land no longer home that we’d set off from,
Wives and lovers we’d taken on who
Intently listened for our great song carrying on.

With strength of a thousand men strong
Our ship broke mooring, the voyage was on.
All hands on deck looked forward, ho!
Minds focused intently on journey begun.

Land became imagination that coo’d our souls
Quietly to sleep, rocking to and fro.
To every morning, as we woke to clear day,
Cheap sailors rations to make us row.

Night to day and dark to dawn,
Feign attempts at moving on.
A sailors dream but lasts two days,
Quickly blown and torn away.

It’s here where brotherhood arises,
Amidst thick fog and setting horizons;
A common quest, through all disguises,
Men! Heave-ho! Booty and prizes!

Aye! To think the lot a mere bunch of sailors?
Ruddy men dancing with nightly fancies!
Whence stopped at port, may the best man win!
Captain Black Gun and his notorious escort.

Tis’ not all easy for the roughest of men
Amidst all deceit lives honesty then,
A Pirate’s code delivered in blood
Rests all accused deep below their judgment plank.

And as time comes for setting on,
Morning awaits, mooring long gone,
For silently creaking we steal away
Locked in our treaty of the great Pirate code.

Off again then, land locked lovers lament,
Open sea and sweet smelling air.
All becomes lost, save the fresh smell
Of a clear sunny day and wind in our hair.

So whenever you hear tell of a sailor’s ship
Sailing through the Seven seas at a magnificent clip,
Think to yourself of Captain Black Gun
And the legend that carries the Pirate code strong.

 

Georgia-Straight-Ned-Tobin

Love in the Key of D (day 1351)

I’m in a habit of unconditional love,
Of putting fire beside wind
And letting coals glow on.

I like getting letters immaculately written,
Long sentences with important verbiage
Informing me of all I need to know.

It takes all my fancy dancing
To keep the music ringing,
And I let hands of perfect maidens
Spin my soul forever free.

Not Alone (day 1282)

I am not alone in this.
I am not standing here;
Soft music serenading
My lonely heart.
I am not a typist
Rhythmically dancing to
Magical clicks spelling off
Ransom notes of varying
Degrees of importance.
But my fingernails are delicately pruned,
So wands and spells can expertly roll – Full of life and other such necromances –
Off and away and beyond
These simple imaginations of a man,
Not alone, but lonely.

image

Lost Connections (day 1246)

I start finding lost connections
About gurgling waves
Lapping around poles and
Sheet metal, breaking
The X – Y plane
With flashes of memories
That thunder through my hull.
I recognize a lost connection
As rusting red leaves mixed with
Rubber ducky yellows
Spin their way along the Y-axis,
Dancing nimbly with warm arms
Of X and Z stitches.
Lost connections break my conscience
With each dead 3 pronged plugin,
With each false hope of recharge.
But each diagonal floats on by,
Twisting like an unbroken chain of genes
Through my alert moments
Realizing it’s not the destination,
It’s the journey in the end.

My Illument Back (day 1158)

Should you have rolled me into that pixie white gown?
I laughed with the mariners first touch of ground.
Fire is a gentle nature and this is my bed,
Candles sing songs lingering on into eve.

You are the nature and I am the dreamer,
I am the weaver and you are my story.

My delicate folding showed my illument back,
Stark in this darkness which I escaped into dreams.
Your seaman’s hoarseness upon my plumped, splayed curls,
Changing hands with a thousand dusting fairies.

You are the nature and I am the dreamer,
I am the weaver and you are my story.

And this morning dew and fog brings adieu,
Seaman cold thunderstorm, restless I blow the wind.
Boots go away knocking: your only whispers I can hear.
Untying knots and a lover’s foreign spices.

Flower’s Heart (day 1090)

I’ve got memories stored deep inside a flower’s heart.
It’s named sunshine and a memory
For your hidden broken secret.
Nobody knows, and it’s
Nobody knows.
Dancing with the street lights,
Unmarked walls of silent hallways.
Which have me singing out loudly
With angry pixies and upset fairies.
Lightly dancing strings of laughter
About my hidden secrets name,
Knowing I’m forever dreaming
Deep inside this heart’s remains.
This flower never after.
Nobody knows, and it’s
Nobody knows.