It might have begun this way:
each night wolves hunted,
the moon their guide.
Sometimes large, sometimes a sliver:
enough light to teach them
night is night, a good time to roam.
Moonlight is a time for food and family,
and learning patterns of seasons.
That might be how it was, at least
I’d like to believe that. Routine,
a helix in each of us,
pulls us to pattern and expectation, and
continuity. Families find this thin connection
around light or closeness, or both.
But what if the moon disappeared,
a lunar eclipse, gradually going into dark?
Wouldn’t you stop too, look up, and beg
for its return? Maybe that is how it began,
that aching howl, that begging, a
fear that the moon will forget to come back.
So that each night now begins with cries,
letting the moon know how much
it would be missed
and we look up, wolves and humans alike,
and recount to each other, in our own way,
“The moon came back,
and we are grateful for the light.”
Cynthia Pratt’s poems have appeared in Crab Creek Review, Raven Chronicles, Quill & Parchment, Feminist Theology Poetry, and other publications. Her manuscript, Celestial Drift¸ was published in 2017. She is the first Poet Laureate of Lacey as of January, 2022.