It seems like it was yesterday, the night we spent on the mountainside gazing upon the stars and sipping from that bottle of Moscato. When was it? I'm thinking it had to have been May. Well after all the showers and the flowers had started to bloom, with the scent of life in the air; it was so beautiful. It was near the fifteenth, but all I can really remember was that I never wanted those nights to end. I remember walking on that old stone path admiring your every step. As the light from my torch glistened like melting silver reflecting off of your hair in golden light, like a torch of its own, I was guided deeper into your soul. I remember how vivid the moon was that night; how your eyes fit so perfectly against the light as if they were creating an eclipse. You were definitely meant to be something more, something more than what you were. I remember seeing you yawn as you sat against that old oak tree. Basking in your beauty, you seemed to slip into nature. You could have been an angel sent from the stars. Your luring figure mimicked the beauty of the towering oak with ease. "The body of an angel," I recall thinking to myself, with legs that twisted my mind like the limbs of the northeast trees by the water's edge. I loved the way your silhouette formed among the stars and your hair flowed in the nightly breeze, with lips that shimmered like rippling light dripping from the nearby rocks of the creek. Watching the wind blow your hair across your face was as enchanting as watching deer emerge from the foliage of a forest. Before I slid into a trance, you broke my train of thought with what you said; "Baby, I'll remember this night forever". Honestly, that night couldn't have gotten any better than what it already was. Even if I live to be a thousand years old, I couldn't dream of a better experience.
We were approaching the top of the mountain after a long and draining hike, and neither of us seemed to have a hint of sleep in our eyes. The night was just too much to let it slip away in slumber. As we climbed the last long streak before the cliff rocks began to roll from under foot, our breath became heavier and harder to take. Passing under the fallen tree that had blocked our path, you lost your footing and slid down, getting stuck in between my feet as my hand grabbed your pack. I remember being so worried that you were hurt, but your laughter reassured me that you were okay. Your grin was priceless as you chuckled and said, "Good thing you have the wine!" Shaking my head and fixing your pack you asked, "Are we almost there?" We had approximately 300 meters to our destination so we quickly made our way to the cliff's ledge. It was just a few paces past the rock that looked like a whale, and a j line past the face. Sitting there with you, looking at the stars, I remembered the story of Ursa Minor and Ursa Major that I had told you about.
Ursa is an old Greek word for bear. While Ursa Minor was a small bear, mothered by Ursa Major, he was also thought to be a dog by travelers of the sea; always following their dog to find their way home. Ursa Major was the "great bear" or the mother of the little bear. As the story goes, Zeus's wife got jealous of the woman, Ursa Major, so she banished her and her son to the sky, never to set below the ocean. Zeus grabbed them by their tails and swung them around his head, tossing them to the sky.
After chatting and catching our breath, we began to pitch our little tent at the top of the world. Popping the top to that bottle of your favorite Pink Moscato, we lit all the candles that were in your pack. Some of them were broken, but that was okay; it just added to the charm of that night. It felt like an eternity holding you and drinking that wine on the mountain side. As the candles became one with the rocks and wine became water, you fell asleep in my arms as I overlooked the world. I thought to myself as you slept- "what could I have done to deserve such an amazing girl?" To find such a treasure is almost unheard of. As I laid my head on yours and gazed upon the stars, I fell asleep along with you.
That morning, I carried you to the tent and started a fire to prepare a meal. I spent the next few hours writing a few passages in my journal. I guess you could call them my amendments to the legend of the great Ursa bears. I never told you about the passages I wrote. I continued to write from where I left off with the Ursa story. I wrote about how the Native Americans say it was a hunter and bear traveling around the sky. They were following the seasons, ending with the hunters and their dog killing their prey to provide for their families. Covering the trees with the blood of their spoils, they explain the changing of the seasons and the red leaves of autumn. That's what the old people thought. I continued to write more about the stars and what they meant to me. I thought of the little bear as Roshi, the puppy we got about 5 years ago, and how it looks like he's chasing his tail around the North Star. It's a great way to tell time, I discovered... after realizing how much time I spent just watching him chase his tail. I saw the big bear as you. Even though the old stories had nothing to do with your beauty, the mother part stood out to me. As the mother of Roshi, you were always sticking by his side, caring and watching over him. I guess that night I decided that I would always have you and Roshi in the sky, to remember and add stories to as I traveled through life no matter where I would go. It's been a few years since that night up the old stone path to the cliff with a tree. Almost every night I write new poems and stories to add to your stars, with Roshi by my side.
The ending passage in that old broken journal is from a random girl I met in a mountain town after a May fifteenth poetry reading. It reads.... "I fear that our love will change with the seasons; from a warm new beginning, to a cold ending...but in the end, the cycle goes on."
Way beyond amazing. I love the story, the imagery is perfect. It really helps the reader imagine everything. From the rock that looked like a whale, to the Ursa Major, to the journal passages- it's all just incredible. I can't help but think this is personal and close to you. Thank you for sharing this.