A Hundred Gourds 4:4 September 2015

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Ray Rasmussen - Canada

The Waning Moon . . .

. . . is reflected on the blue-black stillness of Kenbrook Lake. A loon’s call transports me to that first time I had stayed here with her. Might this be the same one that sang to us on our trip? I remember adding more firewood to delay that awkward moment when it would be time to move into to our tent. I remember wondering, How will this work out?

embers —
slipping into
an ice-cold sleeping bag


I sit down and she inquires: "Tell me what brings you here."

"It's rattle snakes and women," I reply.

"Rattle snakes?"

"Yeah, on my last visit to the desert, I almost stepped on a rattler that was buzzing and didn't know about it until my hiking companions yelled at me to jump.

"And women?"

"Don't you notice how they mumble a lot," I reply, "and how they tend to drop the volume of their last few words?"

"Yes, they do. What about my voice level?" she asks.

"I break the world into two groups, those who speak up and those who need megaphones. You're in the speak up camp."

"It has to do with my family. I grew up with an unusual amount of family with hearing problems and I learned to raise my voice." she says.

"So wouldn't a small megaphone attached to my gal's mouth, kinda like a face guard, be a lot easier and much cheaper than a hearing aide?"

"We don't deal in those, but I can recommend a marriage counselor," she says.

eye exam —
the way-too-tiny writing
on the wall

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