Missive the Twenty-Sixth


A Blood Moon
On the Thirteenth.


DATELINE: Friday, October 13, 2000, at 2359 hours CDT.
Conway, Arkansas, USA


By D. Ebenezer Baldwin Bowles
CornDancer & Company

How comfortable with the conventional nature of his radicalism is the third leading candidate for president of the United States of America? (Who knows? We won't go there tonight.)

Rather, be afraid. Let us be afraid.

Topics of special interest and some passion bubble in the cauldron on this cool eve, but none of them shall be developed, merely touched - if touched at all. "Too serious lately," the mistress of the hacienda said in the garden just before sunset. "Maybe you need to lighten up."

Let's lighten up with fear.

To do so, however, means I can't tell you about the familiar spirit who latched onto my aura at the ballgame last weekend, about how I had to wrestle with it in the motel bed throughout the night, how spiritual wranglers from the river delta had to be called like cavalry to ride to my rescue and assist in the expulsion of the beast.

Nope. Can't tell you that tale.

Let's Mosey on over to a Less Threatening Sward.

Therefore, duly diligent, I've got to be like a cow and mosey somewhere less threatening.

"Full Moon, Blood Moon, true and trusty,
Tell me who my true love must be."

Friday, the thirteenth day of October, a Friday the Thirteenth it is. At this languid moment, the bright day has faded behind the oaks and sycamores on the western horizon. Now the night of the Blood Moon dissolves outward, flows o'er Cricket Song.

In keeping with the diverse and fractured nature of things, each full moon has names, several of them. Thirteen full moons shine o'er the course of each solar year.

On their radio show this morn, the left leaning skimmers from Washington, District of Columbia, called tonight's full globe the Hunter's Moon, paying proper urban homage to America's backwoods traditions. This moon projects a perfect light for the hunter's eyes, better to spill the blood of noble prey on the midnight forest floor.

["Know this," said Oksob, occupant of the opposite loft, ever protective of his oft-burdensome charge. "The mere act of naming a left-wing organization does not indicate Ebenezer's ready embrace of the right."]

A Dance with Spirits under the Blood Moon.

The witches, sorcerers, and shamans, not so eager to hunt hares and stags at midnight, prefer to call it the Blood Moon, indicating the arrival of a seasonal ritual of passage, the hour-after-sunset gathering on a common sward, when spirits of departed sharers join their blood-bound relations in a sacred dance to the rhythms of harvest song. Elsewhere, in the high North, in the places of the Long Night, where deciduous leaves have already turned and fallen, it is the Winterfelleth Moon, the Ten Colds Moon, snow upon the ground and the winter upon us.

It just struck me, the bolt from Thor, this very second to interrupt my moseying. Fear. Now I see it clearly! Triskaidekaphobia.

Calendar watching raised the alarm, I just know it. It made me think about this present prosperity, about the time of too much fear.

Awareness of so much mass anxiety surfaced like a blast of impending doom just moments after I began to chart a channel of thought for tonight's Missive. At first I thought the blast arose from another of the "we-should-be-worried-about-this" initiatives. A new one is introduced hourly by the cynics and terror-minions of mainstream and fringe media. I've been paying much too much attention to their chattering voices lately. My hackles have been stiffer than usual.

The influences of numerology led me here. I'm suddenly convicted of the heresy. I must admit it out loud: I think numbers do have an influence on events and happenings, on the lives of women and men. Threes and sevens and twelves do have import.

"And this from a lad who cannot tolerate astrology!" said Oskob, especially chatty in the sun's reflected light.

War, an Ozone Hole, the Hounds of Lilith.

All along 'till Thor's bolt fell, all along I thought it was the theatre of war they race toward in the Middle East that scared me so; or maybe I was too much under the influence of the Green Party and their stylized radical leader, a dubious proposition which made me over-react to the ozone hole's latest dysfunction in the South (they say it is growing like the Blob); or, I might have been unduly worried by the anticipated attack upon Cricket Song's boundary shields by the winged hounds of Lilith, who may be anxious to retaliate.

Six hundred and eighty-eight years ago, on Friday, October Thirteenth, Thirteen Hundred and Twelve, the Knights Templar were destroyed once and for all by the diligent defenders of Status Quo. For anyone or any group caught beyond the pale of territory claimed by the powers that be, or for anyone who presumes to step outside the boundaries of behavior set by the Normals who rule, Friday the Thirteenth on the occasion of a full moon is a dire date indeed.

Those wretched souls already on the edge of schizophrenia, anhedonia, pyromania, or nymphomania will fall fully into the iron grasp of their mental illness because of the Blood Moon on the Thirteenth tonight. Been thinking about rage and mayhem? You'll have been tipped o'er the edge before dawn. Bemoan, then, the curse. It is wrought so that we might ne'r forget the thirteenth guest at the Lord's Supper, ne'r overlook the thirteenth arrival at the midnight circle of the coven; Judas and Satan, the betrayer and the liar.

Odin's herald told me the hangman's noose is tied with thirteen knots. The good reverend from Memphis, speculating on the plight of several Triskaidekaphobics in the flock, implied in last February's sermon that Cain killed Abel on a Friday the Thirteenth in a portentous year. It rolled 'round a few centuries after you know who was expelled from the Garden. I'm not surprised at news of the expulsion, in light of the known truth (beyond a shadow of doubt, for sure for sure) that Eve gave Adam the apple to eat on Friday the Thirteenth of Year Zero, that she tempted him to commit Original Sin under the pale blue glow of the Mead Moon.

"It is her fault for all of this," Oksob contended. "It is always Eve's fault, her fault for everything."

I'm not so sure. I don't think so. I suspect we're travelling this trail of tears together.

Once I borrowed a horse, kept her a while. I could lead the pony to water, but I could not make her drink. Eve may have picked it, that cursed apple, but the male who sat beside her on the sylvan lawn of Paradise, the guy with one fewer rib, most irrefutably took the first bite.

"If you didn't have us to keep you centered, you'd all of you be out there on the fields of conflict, slaying one another, or baying madly at the moon," the mistress of the hacienda said.

[EDITOR'S END NOTE: Full moons on Friday the Thirteenth appeared most recently in February 1987, July 1984, May 1970, and March 1998.]




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