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The Story Of Bear And Wolf And The Dream Dustdevils rushed across the plains, tumbleweeds rolled towards the fading horizon. Horn Toad stood on his tiptoes, expanded and swayed; the Old Man sat, watched & listened. “Wolf use to tear out their tiny hearts,” Bear said. “Lay em out like a liver platter. He’d pinch out their legs to help along their metamorphosis or fill a jar full of the fuckers. Looked like he had a bunch of wiggling olives; then he’d spend the whole day popping them against Don Navarro’s house.” “Fuck you -- we all did that, but you the only one that ate the little bastards.” “Old Man,” mumbled Bear, “I dream of tadpoles, demented tadpoles. Their hearts ferment in my stomach. All night the croaking disrupts my dreams.” “The croaking in your dream wakes you?” “No, it’s me, croaking, that wakes me. One day, while I ate my lunch, a fly landed on my tamale, I flicked my tongue at it. The funny part is, I caught the son-of-a-bitch and swallowed it too -- what the hell, I’m becoming a fucking frog.” Outside the windmill creaked and clanked, the dogs snarled and snapped, the horses snorted and neighed, and the cattle stood bunched together against a swirling red world. The Old Man motioned, and Bear and Wolf came near. “Listen,” the Old Man began, “go to Frog. Tell him your story. Leave as soon as it clears. You must go to la laguna over the northern hills. This is the only way. It is your spirits that are desperate ...” They both agreed, nodded, said their good-byes and quickly left. The Old Man watched Horn Toad sway, his mouth wide open. He tapped him on his head and his tongue shot out. “What do you think, horned one,” he asked. Horned Toad hissed, half closed his eyes and squirted blood. “Cabron,” the Old Man yelled, spit and wiped his mouth. “Hasta manana,” he said, rolled over and fell asleep. The next morning la luna lay heavy on the silent world, its light broke on the yucca trees, and the shards sliced the earth. Venus hung desperate on the morning sky a guiding lamp for humans who had trouble being. The ranch hands waved goodbye, shook their heads and giggled, as Bear and Wolf rode into the green darkness. Beneath was a mirage. Beneath the green darkness was a mirage or was it real, what lay beneath the darkness, the green darkness. Her screaming mouth, like a mother fish protecting her young, held a thousand frantic tadpoles who fed on her soft tongue. When Bear and Wolf saw this they cried, because they remembered her beauty, how lovely Frog’s daughter had looked covered in moonlight, in cold light, in light and all those tadpoles frantic, demented, beneath the green darkness covered in dead light. Bear croaked and croaked, Wolf jumped and jumped. They ripped their shirts and, croaking and jumping, hopped into the brush their voices fading in the dark. On the seventh moon, Frog visited the Old Man. “I dream of bears and wolves,” he said. The Old Man watched Horn Toad sway, his mouth wide open. He tapped him on his head and his tongue shot out. “What do you think, horned one,” he asked. Horned Toad hissed, half closed his eyes and squirted blood. “Cabron,” yelled the Old man, then looked long and hard at Frog. “Does growling and howling in your dream wake you,” he asked. Outside la luna lay heavy on the silent world, its light broke on the yucca trees, the shards sliced the earth, and Venus hung desperate on the morning sky.
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