by Constance Legters
Saturday, April 05, 2003
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The old woman spoke,
pausing to gaze into glowing embers
of how she had avenged the baby goat,
"I hunted that cougar and killed him...like what he'd done to mine."
Hers had been but livestock, for life's procreation had passed her by.
Old eyes filled as the tale was told
of a hunt begun and a deed done,
"That cougar raised up and snarled his finest ever-
then he was dead."
Silence filled in space between
the ticking of a clock on a relentless course.
"That mama goat never lived long after that.
Course, she was used up and old."
The woman sighed
a long, weary sigh of acceptance,
knowing it was near our time
Only memories would then fill a cabin
devoid of voices to warm an old,
"It was no pleasure but had to be done." she concluded.
I traveled home,
thinking of all the woman had said
and how her life had paralleled the cougar's tale.
Each life is such a story:
adventures and heartaches made simple
in the telling;
victories made hollow
as words filling an empty room
A cougar-skin rug lies reposed in eternal bliss,
as beautiful as on that day of cold death...
as will that gritty old woman
when her time comes.
As will we all.