I encountered a lion yesterday, a big ole scary gnarly grizzly bear. Clothed in degrees and whiteness and a rounded, distended belly, full of spite, hungry for me, juicy, anger at me, a buzz in their ear.
I matched them in arms, you go, I go. I felt my frontal lobe slip, but, in a delicious way, like in the way I left the driveway after waiting five minutes for Lucy and after John had snapped at me. And, unlike before, whereupon I would have swallowed and sucked air and been furious, a poison inside of me, ready to explode at the slightest touch.
I thought. Nah, fuck that.
And I drove away. Got myself a sausage mcmuffin and laughed on the way to work.
Opps I thought.
And you know what?
He said, goddamnit and I made him mad and we were ok.
More than ok.
Because guess what?
I am a human.
So, this bear, he yelled, he stomped, he flashed his teeth and claws.
I fought back. I got to my cave, breathing heavily, a little worse for wear. I got my people around me and we went back to the bear, we grabbed him by his tail, we swung him in the trees, we killed that fucking bear.
I went to sleep with his skin around me, warmed and bloody.
Nevermind the bear had been here for years, we knew better.
I did not sleep soundly though, the images flashed behind my eyelids.
When I awoke I asked my elders if I should do my work, gathering, mending, making.
They said rest now child, you are to be celebrated
For you outrun the biggest bear of all, you made back alive
And you can lay down and rest.
We are glad you are here.
They brought me meat and drink and laid it at my feet,
I felt my muscles and my blood and the soft of my belly,
The parts of my flesh that would have been tasty.
I lay there, alone and together,
Thinking and dozing,
Grasping and releasing,
A gentle rhythm of old.
You made it, resounded over and over,
You are the lucky one.