Moon at Midnight – Part XXXI (day 2005)

(part XXX)

Willow’s best friend was named Mercy
Mercy’s man’s name was Long Arrow
And he was one of the most skilled hunter and tracker
I had ever hunted with
By now I had learned enough Pikanii
To be able to communicate on a basic level
As we walked – Long Arrow, Moon Cow and I –
Through the forest hunting
They were both mostly silent
Making subtle gestures and wild bird calls I envied
But when they were feeling like sharing
They would point and teach me words
Of things I wouldn’t learn
Sitting around inside a teepee.

At our new home, Mercy and Long Arrow
Would join us around the fire on many evenings
Long Arrow was less of a story teller then Moon Cow
But it was nice to have him around
And we all became very close to one another
They had two boys
That were a few years older then Lily
And it was clear that one of them
Would become her man when the moon spoke so,
The eldest was Runs Wild and the younger was Big Moon.

Life was good here, and I felt like I belonged
More so, I felt like I had a part
In keeping the family together
I was helpful, strong and eager
And in a family who lives off the land
That is always a benefit
Plus, I quickly became pretty good
At hunting with a bow
And was able, most days, to bring home food
The others also accepted me
At first I could definitely see them wondering who I was
And what I was doing there
But eventually they all knew me by name
And smiled when they saw me, not scowled
It definitely helped that I was Willow’s man
For she was loved by everybody
That much was clear.

I often wondered to myself
If this was the answer to my journey East
That had started the year before
Before I had met Amy, Frank and Clarinet
And before I had met the Blackfoot
Before I had met Willow, Lily and Moon Cow
It seemed so long ago now
So much of a lonely journey
That was now so much past me
But there was still something inside of me
That called me further East again
I wasn’t quite sure what it was
Or why it was
Only that there was something that I was missing
That I kept seeing in visions
And I knew that it was only a matter of time
Before I journeyed further East
To meet who I knew I was to meet.

part XXXII

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