The Mountain Queen

You are the Mountain Queen. For as long as you can remember, you’ve watched the village far below you. Each night, the forge fire burns and the smith’s hammer can be heard all around you. Since the snow melted, the hammer has been silent and no fire burns…

Moving your senses from high above, they melt down and rise again within the stones of your rivers and streams, down your steep sides and cliffs, pausing and listening, moving on. Then you hear it, shifting your senses, a form begins to take shape near the edge of one of your caves.

A man crouches beside a fire built at its entrance. You summon your energy, with great effort you whisper to him. He lifts his bearded face, twists slowly in ancient soil and peers over his shoulder, deeper within your depths. You whisper and sigh. With deliberation he stands, touches your wall, looks at his boots, back to the fire, then into the darkness once more.

Lifting his chin, he steps forward….

————

She beckons me, always ever. I was not meant to be a man. I was once eternal, as she. Knocked down from my place on high, a lesson to learn for loving her from afar. She is alluring. I am unable to tear myself away from her touch. Thirty-seven long years I have lived as a man. Thirty-seven years I have memorized her sighs and her touch, her seasons and her moods.

When I reigned from my place in the sky, I watched her but never truly felt her, not as I am today. Now I know I must make her mine. I have mastered her stone, shaped it with my tools and the fire made from my own hands. Flesh and bones and scars.

The winter, with its quieting and blankets of snow, making her paths impassable, was nearly unbearable. I worked tirelessly for her. She has no idea who I am, but I feel she is drawn to me just as I am to her. Thirty-eight years ago I made a bargain with her father and he agreed, even as he shook his great white beard in disbelief. I go now to see if my love is powerful enough to mend what was broken. I go now to her.

————

You shift your focus from the entrance of the cave to the trickles of streams within. You weep, you know not why, yet you weep. It is not for the forests which cover your skin. It is not for your daughters who have left nor the men who have gouged your edges and penetrated your secrets. Who take and never give back.

It is not for these things and yet still you weep, even as you hold strong, your crowned and regal head held high. You are the Mountain Queen and what is a few hundred years to you? What is it but the spreading of your skirts and the groaning of your belly and the ever-watchful eye of your father, distant though he be.

You remember the cry of the wolves in winter and the dancing lights in your hair. You remember a voice from long ago but not that long at all. A song whose lyrics you never understood but always wished you did. He sang them to you every night for a millennia until the night dawned in echoes only, and his song faded away.

This man reminds you of the ancient song and so you whisper to him again. You stretch and open slim passageways for him to follow your voice deeper within. He has no fear, you realize, and this brings warmth inside your core. He breaks into your deepest cave, for you led him there after all. He peers around at your walls…

————

Looking around her cave, I am filled with an even greater love, greater respect. Her artistry is divine. I don’t understand at first how it is I can see anything this deep within her folds until I understand it is I who reflects the dim glow. I know she has brought me here. Even as she herself doesn’t comprehend fully why.

There are ancient stalactites and stalagmites and the sound of water dripping. I am standing on the edge of a crystal clear pool. It is silent. Except that I can hear her heart beating. I can hear her murmuring to me. In the depths of the pool I see it then: it is shining like the most polished gold, it pulses, and I know it is her heart.

I look up and around and I am in awe of her beauty. That she would trust me with this. She is a queen, after all, and not easily swayed. I kneel and remove my boots. Then my patched and worn trousers come next. I fold them neatly and place them on top of the boots. Finally I remove my shirt and it rests atop the others.

Without hesitation, I slide beneath the surface and swim to her heart, my only true home.

———

As soon as he climbs down into your pool, you recognize him for who he truly is. He has come down from above, somehow become a man, and pursued you. As soon as his hand touches your heart, you react in the violence of the anticipation of the ecstasy.

You are the Mountain Queen, majestic and powerful, and still you lose control. You laugh, then stand up quickly. Fire erupts within your belly. Then you crumple and curl up as tightly as you can, crushing the tiny body with all the love you were never able to show him before, when he hung so high above your crown.

You absorb him just as he penetrates your quickening heart. You are finally at peace and now no longer a mountain nor a queen.


tara caribou | ©2020

CG Tenpenny gave me the first lines of this and I just went with it. Check out his site for awesome earthy poetry.

11 thoughts on “The Mountain Queen

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