Thursday, August 6, 2015                                                        Dreadful Joy

What the Old Moon Said

At first light, Thrym had been turning furrows for a root garden. Another of the north winds was swirling about impatiently, full of the scent of pine from the mountain and full of curiosity about a mouse with eyeglasses. 

This was the third north wind in two days who had asked about Thrym’s pince-nez. Each time one of these seasonal stragglers happened by, the lonely mouse had welcomed the company. And each time he had leaned on his hoe to explain a rodent’s unhappiness with far sight. 

“You see, I never could play the nutshell games when I was a mouseling or wager on ant races as I grew older. And now that I’m an adult, I’m hopeless with the mouse maidens. Who would want a suitor that can’t whisker-tickle or dance in the glades without bumping snouts?”

This wind listened no more attentively than the others had and soon skipped away. Alone again, the mouse huffed and applied renewed vigor to turning the stiff ground.

“The world is wide,” a silver voice spoke up. “And the heart is not something you can hide. Somewhere under the sky’s blue is someone just right for you.”

Startled, Thrym’s big ears pivoted to either side, before he realized who addressed him. 

“Oh, you.” He frowned up at the old moon. “Please don’t trouble me with your rhymes. I've work to do, and I've squandered enough time talking to the north wind.”

“Dreams are not easy to realize,” the moon noted, a smile tucked in his shadowy beard, “because life is so full of surprise.”

“I mean it. No games right now.” Thrym glared at the pocked face. “No time for poems or prophecy. I've seeds to plant.”

“Prophecy?” The moon hummed. “Let me see. Oh, yes. Here’s a guess. Before this morning is fully done, your greatest adventure will have begun.”

The young mouse gazed hard at the pale-lit face. “Adventure? For me—on this backwoods croft? The empty-headed winds are my only visitors. Three planting seasons, I've done nothing but grow tubers and potatoes. The only adventure for me today will be lancing blisters. What do you say to that?”

But the old moon said nothing. He floated silently in the sky, as pale as glass.

From Brave Tails


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