Saturday, October 29, 2005

Mountain Ghosts

Parson done

Don't rightly know folk first off, (my papa said)
see'in howse they are proper s'picous
o' people askin' questions nun there bus'ness.

Well, I remembered that strong
and kept my council close,
and my comments small like whittle shavings
until my stick was sharp --
no purpose though 'cept
showin' I respected a keen edge
and slow patient stone
spit on after a swoller of cider. (learnt from Granny)

I was sittin' idle with friends
and dogs feet up in the sun lazy
when the Parson amble by to invite
hisself to dinner and pluckin'
by the night fire afore
the story tellin'.

"You might be needing that stick there,"
he offered, then said nuthin'.

Now I scratched my mem'ry
of preacher stories and local talk,
but didn't free no tick
'cept maybe that rumor 'bout
a skeleton up to Clevis Ridge
with Hawthorn stakes
through its eyes.

Parson was like that --
a simple little statement meanin' nuthin'
and every Jack and Jane were afixin'
to tell a ghost yarn that night.
Me? I set to figurin' how he was gwanna
turn this scarry fedaddle
into some spiritual lesson.

Well, nigh on whisper ember time
with no one willin' to put another log --
and the stories new all gone
and the old'ones half told again,
it came to me that bein' skeert
was all from not knowin'
but wantin' to set an answer
where none fit --
and of wantin' to warn youngins
of hid dangers and trouble lurkin'
which stuck in mem'ry fast
when yer eyeballs is big.

So I tweren't surpised
when Parson took his turn.

"I stopped by the Larkin cabin today."

"Here it comes," I thought.
Nobody been near that place since the fire,
what with Jeb toasted inside and all.

Single guys stopped chattin', and
couples nestled close quit spoonin' quick.
Yes sir -- they was ready to be scared.

"I heard all sorts of strange noises
and saw colored light between the logs,
and though of spooks or witches right off."

I grabbed by stick awaitin' there,
just ready fer the call. (not scared though!)

"Yup! If I had hung back and skulked away,
like some folks I be knowing …," (he offered slow)
"I'd be tellin' you now to stay far away,
and fetch yer kids up from the pond." (his hands aflyin')

"but I went right up and offered my hand,
just like the Book been tellin' you,
and even helped a bit with cleaning,
and painting and putting windows in."

I kinda chortled low.

"Fella name of Fred Fowler bought the place,
and is fixing it up something grand,
seeing he has only one arm from the war.
And his Annie gal sure turned a chicken right,
and said she was baking berry pies
in case other nice folk herebouts
happened by."

He turned to me and grinned.

"That stick will help a lot
with the chinking in narrow cracks.

I told them I'd be seein' some neighbors
and pass the word …"

Then Parson done what he always do,
just strolled off alone,
never skeert a'nothin'.


At 8:59 PM, Blogger le Enchanteur said...

it came to me that bein' skeert
was all from not knowin'

This is the bottom line isn't it faucon. We are skeert of the unknown. I love the style of this piece. It has a lilting ring to it.

At 11:14 PM, Blogger Lois said...

Faucon.....I have only ever known one man, not skeert of nuttin.
That was my Dad Albert Edward Daley(Bert for short) except by Mum who always called him Alby.
He stood up for his beliefs,his family,his rights ,and so on.
No truck with any religion though,no hangers on he would say.
NO ghost stories in our home no fantasy, never read any books about ghosts .."If you can't see then it don't be" said Bert,.No Father Christmas,no Easter Bunny ,no one to leave you a penny when the tooth fairy came.
No blinds drawn,no doors locked ,no lights left on.."There ain't nothing out there" he would say......... .
He would go off on his bike at midnight ,ride 5 miles to the power station to fix a boiler broken down...the message delivered on foot by the local policeman ..We did not have a phone connected in those days...
Often in blackout times during WW2.,dark as dark... he was called out, no fear in this man ,no superstitions to be worried about...just a job needing doing..No lights allowed on the push-bike ,ride in darkness
I am a bit like Dad ,not frightened ..but fantasy is good for me as I write with Heather at the Soul Food Cafe....It is my wonderful escape from perhaps some unhappy times...but no more,I relish the wonderful dreaming that is on this site

Lois (Muse of the Sea)
Sunday 30th Oct.2005..

At 11:05 AM, Blogger Anita Marie Moscoso said...

I can't wait to share this with my friends at work on Halloween. For the past five years people I work with will wander down into the warehouse and get me to tell them stories from my 'funeral days'. Of course I can't really do that, but I do tell them stories and with full credit to your Faucon I shall repeat this one.

Anita Marie


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