Mudlark No. 56 (2015)

Mad at the Moon

Once there was an old fir at the side of our house, and in warm dry months the moon would etch each branch onto the wall of our bedroom. We’d wake to that dark, love it.

The tree’s been gone for years, lost to drought, and now a new drought’s here. Months without rain, and last week it was all moon all the time, it seemed.

The moon hangs low this time of year, so when it shines through panes east of our room, my wife pulls close to me in bed: not bad!

But the night goes on. One sleeps, one wakes to see the moon’s passed the roof-peak, shoots through the west now, rests on one face—and the one who can’t sleep sees the moonlit one as if stretched out on stone, eyes shut—then, as nights go at our age, switch of roles, one wakes, one sleeps.

We’re mad at the moon, you say at 6 as I get up/dress/come to this desk and write.

Sky dry, soil dry, skin sere—I think of the monks, skulls on their desks, that blanched death-watch—and laugh. I bet they slept well—not once to see a monk-mate carved in stone, not once to sleep with the dead. Just a desk, a skull—blank both day & night.

This can’t go on. Rain! More nights of this, we’ll walk in a daze, crazed, sand in our hair, stones in our shoes...

Who are you?

Who are you?

Gerald Fleming | His wife loves birds,
Contents | Mudlark No. 56 (2015)