A Dying Passion

What is it that makes the sea so green beneath the orange sun and so dark under the soft white moon?

I have heard that there was a man deep in the sea who slept and dreamed all things that lived by the waves and the salt. But now, it is said, he seeks in vain a silence in his mind, for it is broken by the crash of waves and the barking of seals. Laughter gushes forth from the tide-pools, and he hears the gulls call his name in mockery. He cannot even shake his fist any longer because he has been lost since his slumber ended, and no longer can he bring his voice to rise above the tumult of his home. Once his might was like the hurricanes and the moon, but no more.

There is woman on the lip of the cliffs who would jump in ecstasy if she could, plummeting into the water to end her life. But she is of the land, and despite her longing to join the man in the sea, she cannot. Heavy lids have kept her blind to the glory, and now the harshness of her home makes her weep. She has fallen many times in the dust and stood naked in the cracked dunes of eternity, and so she lost her will. She wandered the earth listening for the sounds that her home once made, trying to make it echo again. And now she stands on the cliff, waiting for a death that cannot happen..

* * *

In the dark light of the winter's morning, I look into the sky and pretend that I see my face. It is there, amidst the stars, the eyes of the Mother and Father. My earth-parents are inside, stoking the fires that keep us warm.

Fire. The gift from the Sun that warms the house where so many of my family have died. The weak spirit that only chases away shadows, not the greater darkness that can find its way around all light. I remember the pain of loss that I once thought fire would keep me from. There was my little baby, Ichita, who died when a wolf spirit ate half of her body; my sister Ichiinduk who died at the hands of a bear spirit which came into our home one night and nearly killed us all. I myself still have wounds from that same spirit, for it was I who used the Voice of the Parents to cast it out.

Each night at midnight the great cat sits upon my chest. A small price to pay, I think. I'm paralyzed for a few hours, it enters my heart and chews on my soul, then it leaves by morning. My family sleeps undisturbed, and I have never told them of the bargain I made to protect them