Saturday, May 21, 2016
I hear them at night, sometimes, east of the Well of Memory, west of the Mountains of Desire. They talk like herons after dark, like bears torn from sleep, like alien phone sex, like underground rivers, but mostly like a storytelling of crows. When the moon is old, I send my my shadow to listen.
“Back off,” says a story that might be a griffin to one of the hungry ones. “He’s mine.”
“But I’m starving.” The smaller story is drooling.
“Then go snack on something your own size," says the bigger story. "This is is my ride.”
There is pushing and scuffling, and complaints from tall tales and flash fiction that has been flushed out of cover or jolted from long moonbath siestas.
The hungry one leaves, snarling, to make a hide in the long grass by the beaver swamp.
The one who has been scented by the big story comes along the path, humming a tune from a musical.
He feels a stir in the air. With it comes the sense that he is being watched, or even ogled. He turns to look behind him. Nothing there.
Something wallops him. He is knocked to his knees. The something is settling between his shoulder blades, drilling into the base of his neck, jabbing at his kidneys. He writhes and gropes behind him. He feels what may be a snout, and the hard ruthless curve of talons or claws.
"Gotcha," says the big story.
I just concluded "Writing as a State of Conscious Dreaming", a writing and storytelling retreat like no other, at magical Mosswood Hollow in the foothills of the Cascades. The dates for next year's retreat are May 22-26, 2017.