Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Thunderstorm and Fairy Tale

They're ill-shaped, those stories
About beasts and witches,
Children being eaten,
Poisoned, hacked to pieces,
And we don't really know
Why we even like them,

Nor why they were first liked,
Nor when they were first told,
By what sort of people
In what sort of village.
Presumably, campfires
Anchored early versions,

Assuming campfires came first,
Not narratable worlds.
Like symbolic squiggles,
Geometric patterns,
And ghostly hand stencils
On cliffs, caves, or bodies,

They're easiest to find
In remoter places
And as the handiwork
Of typical children
Who build their first stories
From daisy-chained events

Linking chunked memories
To startlingly gruesome
Disasters and triumphs.
Today in this village
A small boy is telling
A tale about thunder

That is entirely his
And composed of nothing
He hasn't been given.
There was a sick old man
Who was hunting a bear
Way high in the mountains

But when he shot the bear
It got really angry.
It was a magic bear,
And he was shooting it.
It kept getting bigger
And it roared the thunder

And then it ate him up,
But he was shooting it
From inside its stomach
And the lightning came out
And the bear roared and then
It exploded the rain.

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