Wednesday, October 23, 2013

deer-hiding moon

Mule Deer - Four Canyons Preserve
Ellis County, Oklahoma
September 2013

The Osage say that the moon is a woman and that she makes her appearance twelve times a year. With this periodicity and the tremendous effects she has upon the earth and its children, it is natural that she should be a woman.  When she attains full glory and dominates the ridges, there is never any disturbance by the male element, and all is tranquil as under the soothing hand of a great mother.  Grandfather the sun has gone to rest, and even Father the Fire is dim in her presence, as though out of a traditional understanding and deference, like a great warrior in camp where woman is supreme.

At dawn she leaves, they say, as a good woman should, taking her children, the stars, with her, so as not to disturb Grandfather the Sun when he takes over the male world of daytime.  She goes on silent moccasins and with modesty befitting a woman. Each one of her twelve appearances has special significance, and the Osage have designated them and given each appearance a name characteristic of its significance to their bit of earth.  September is deer-hiding moon.

- John Joseph Matthews
Talking to the Moon

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