Wednesday, April 14, 2004

She Told Me

She always told me

to take a willow branch

and gently whip the spirits

out of the house

calling, calling

Ästam we are leaving

ästam do not stay.

She always told me

to put the food away at night

to cover the dishes

or the spirits

would crackle and dance

whistle in our ears

and drive us mad.

I obeyed.

She always told me

never to eat the guts of

animals while I was pregnant

or the baby would be born

with a rope around the neck.

I yearned for the guts.

She always told me

never to walk over men

while I was in my moon

or they would die from my power.

I thought that was the idea.

She always told me

that Nöhkom, the medicine bag

had given here three cigarettes.

That's why the lizards

walked around inside her head.

I watched the flicker of her tongue.

Louise Halfe

:: note :: . . . want to set aside some space for words not found online . . . valuable words . . words close to home . . . one more . . .