“Spirit Buck” by Karen Zenner

Mythic narrative.
⁓The Voice before the Void

“Spirit Buck”

Karen Zenner

The first year I went hunting –
with Pa and Mike –
Everyone winked at me, and said,
“He looks like he’s all set for Ol’ Spirit.”
And I grinned and said I was.

Only a few had actually seen Spirit,
And then there was them that said they’d
gotten off a shot,
But you could count them on one hand.
White, majestic, living in the forest longer
than anybody, even Grandpa, could remember.
He’s fought off coyotes, bears, pumas, and us
Everyone wants him, but no one wants him to die.
Our symbol, the spirit buck.

Once, when I was very old,
When I’d given up all hope,
I saw Him.
Bigger ‘n they said.
More beautiful, and lonely.
I took a shot, but through my tears, I couldn’t
see Him straight and it seemed as though
My bullet went right through
And He was gone.

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