Antler

….. An antler shed
….. In a Maytime field:
….. Happy for the friend
….. Who picks it up.

  ……………   (Mizuo, Kyoto, 4.5.11)

3 Responses to “Antler”

  1. in an unused field
    in deep grass,
    one antler found;
    a deer’s spring gift

    With our wives natty headgear blowing in the mountain winds, Chief Toto and I marched along the paddy sloop looking for some ducks an elderly villager kindly informed us were resting where rice would grow. We saw the ducks, a pair, sunning themselves, for it was cold tho bright. We chose to pace thru an empty field, for no reason. My eyes, ever open for adventures, caught something in the tall grass unusual, the horn of a deer. He must have shed it recently, but where was the other one? Not thereabouts. I possessed it, and will make something wonderful. Ground Oriental medicine to rival Vigara? Decoration for hanging over the fireplace? A dozen hanko of various sizes? Don’t know now. But just looking at this masterpiece of nature brings such satisfaction, and reminds me of the day in the mountains.

    escaping the town
    lungs tasting pure air,
    the mind goes blank with joy.

  2. Similarly, exploring behind the old victorian age Hamm’s brewery, now a shambles of rotting stone and graffitti renderings, a pair of antlers lying in last years leaves and branches. “What history is this?”, I wondered, in nearly the exact center of the urban center of this Midwestern town.
    The mighty Mississippi River meanders some two miles to the south, with paved streets, skyscrapers, and century old homes lying in between. Although, old Swede Hollow lies between, the creek that gouged its valley over eons only appearing for a short distance before returning underground before it spills somewhere into the river. Do the birds and animals remember this old track, in their genes somehow, forever to return?
    it gives me hope, that when Man is gone, the old ways will carry on, ancient codes and maps written into the very stone beneath our feet.

    • Thank you, Willie, for this evocative comment. You found a pair of antlers. I wonder what deer sheds a pair in the same place, at the same time. But I don’t know the North American fauna. It could be they were hunted/collected and someone threw them away? In Japan, at least, they seem to fall off separately, which means you just might, at this time of year, see a lop-sided unicorn.

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