Unravelling and weaving, sometimes simultaneously

Jump Start

Out at the edge of the garden
where the tended beds stopped
and the weeds encroached
recapturing the land

Coyote sat
licking his leg
for no other reason
but that it was
a Tuesday

and that made it an excellent day
for leg licking.

I sidled up to him
and asked
if he had seen my magic.

I had lost it
some time back
when I tripped on a sidewalk
leaving the woods
but I hadn’t noticed
it wasn’t there
until I needed my heart

and there’s no universal tool
for that
of course
you have to use the one
you’re issued at birth.

He cocked his head.

Of course he had seen me trip

and he’d laughed

so maybe
he’d put my magic
in his pocket
as a joke
and would offer it back
at some extravagant price…

“It is easier,”
he grumbled,
“to find your magic
than to keep it.
It is easier
to forget where it is
than to remember
to use it.”

We stared at each other
for a long moment.

He really expected me
to grasp his homily

but as usual
I didn’t speak
the canine patois
Coyote was versed in

only hearing

He sighed.
“Great Moon
you are stupid.
Where is your heart now?”

I pointed to my chest
where my heart lay
flat and empty
and he nodded.

“Do you think
your magic
that stuff you were born with
that stuff designed
to be the ultimate multitool
for the traveler
would ever allow itself
very far
from your heart?”

I thought about that
and I got
a lump in my throat
tears filled my eyes

I looked around wildly

and he chuckled
this time.

Before I knew
what he was about
he leapt into the air
like a hairy ninja
and kicked me square
in the sternum.

“Cough it up!”
he demanded.

My mouth flew open
and I hacked

a blistering shuddering
emptying noise

and from my throat
across my tongue
and between my teeth
flew a shining ball
all colors
and colorless
at once

that swelled into a bubble
at the edge of my lips
and glistening
with spit and sunshine
it reflected
Coyote’s grinning face

as it swallowed me back.

Inside my breast
my heart began
to swell
and beat again

and I turned away
from the garden
towards the forest
with a smile of thanks
he waved away

“That’ll fix you
for a while”
he grunted

settling back
to his untended leg.


(c) RCGA 2015


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