Vo l . 7 N o . 1
Three Rules In a quiet, wood-warmed house, over pilot bread, fish strips, coffee, an Athabascan woman passes me three rules, like cards, to play against the future: Don’t talk about it. Be ready. Laugh. Nisqually Barn Door and Lock
Oil of fish gleaming around her lips, she says exactly this:
Don’t talk about the future. Wait for it. When it comes, it comes. You be ready. If it is easy, you laugh, and be easy. If it is hard, you laugh, and be hard. Laugh like that crazy River, like that crazy Raven. Like that, they call fish to them. Like that, they make themselves full and happy.
Marion Avrilyn Jones
Threshold By Tuesday, we’ve already written our story whole cloth from starving air. For us, this can’t go anywhere. And yet, trapped as a skitter-eyed cat, I lay my offerings at your door, dead-bird beginnings. Your refusal never arrives. The rest, curled as a flaming page, tells and retells us every time: whispered apologies clumsy as words, pliant as honesty, wide as the eyes of a wedding-night bride.