The Man Who Ate The Sun

Jun 30, 2013 by

Sun_March_2010_Filtered_by_StormPenguinIn a land far away in a place where gods danced freely across the grass; Mother sun was always at play. High and bright, she was joy. Flowers titter-tilted to follow her golden feet as they danced, the bees made music and honey. She touched man, beast, field alike and made them grow.
She was gracious as well as kind. She would bow her wheat-blond head to grumpy Grandfather rain, letting him mutter, mumble, rumble about to water all the things that grew dry with her touch.
Father Moon watched the sun from far, far away. Placed on the other side of the world to shine down, ever-guiding the oceans, he could not abandon his duty to come down and dance with her. But he could watch.
A man in the village watched them both for some time. He saw how the Moon’s silvery light waned, how the Sun smiled during the day–but how it faded at night when Moon arose. He thought to himself that this was too sad. So one day he told his wife that he wished to help them. For they reminded him of them when they were young; he from one village and she from the other. He told her that he would have to travel very far and she cried. She said, “How can you leave? I have no children. I will be alone.”
He said, “Woman, have faith. I love you and I will bring you the sun and moon. This I promise.” He kissed her brow and packed little, grabbed his walking stick and left.
He traveled far. He saw the Great Turtle in the mountains and asked him for help. The Great Turtle sent him to the Laughing-crow in the dark forest. Laughing-crow said he did not know, that he should ask Uncle Bear instead. He spent many years through dangers untold to track Uncle Bear. One day in a bright forest with trees that stretched as giant walking sticks, he found the Uncle Bear and asked him how he might help Mother Sun and Father Moon.
Uncle Bear told him at length and he did not like it. They argued and spoke for many weeks, attracting all the animals to listen in. But in the end, Uncle Bear’s words did not change. The man finally relented, bowing his head and made his journey back.
When he returned to his village, he was no longer a young man. Not an old man yet, but gray had touched his temples, his shoulders had broadened and he stood proud. His wife for a moment did not recognize him when he stood in their hut. When he spoke however, she wept with joy and welcomed him back. So too did his village, so too did Mother Sun who danced brightly across the earth.
The man put a hand upon his wife’s arm to still her and called to Mother Sun. He said, “I have traveled everywhere man’s feet will go. I have spoken with the Great Turtle, I have spoken with Laughing-crow, I have spoken with Uncle Bear.” His voice caused a great hush. “He told me many things. He told me how Mother Sun and Moon could be together.”
So he told Mother Sun, his wife and his village. When they heard what he said they cried out in anger and fear.
“How could that work?” They shouted.
“Why would you even do it?” They cried.
Mother Sun stilled them with her warmth, laying a hand upon the man’s arm. Though she said nothing, all could see that she had made her choice.
That night, she cut a piece of herself–bright as love, light as joy–and bled yellow onto the man’s floor so that he could eat of her.
The village did not forgive him and cast him and his wife out. For weeks they wandered alone. His wife cried that he should not have done what he did. He said, “Hush, woman, I have made you a promise and I will not break it.” She did not understand what he meant and cried harder.
After many weeks they found a village who had not heard of the man who ate the sun. They settled in a new hut and soon, his wife came to him in surprise.
“I am with child!” She exclaimed, holding her belly. “Oh, husband–I thought I would never be!” She finally stopped crying over her old village and smiled. The man was filled with pride.
When their daughter was born she did not look like the other children. Her eyes were as yellow as gold rings, her hair as bright as campfires, her skin the color of bronze knives. She grew into a woman of warmth, who drew many to her with her love as well as care.
Soon the man and his wife were old and their daughter old enough to be married. Many men from many villages came to try and win her heart. None of them were good enough. The girl’s mother began to worry that there were never be grandchildren.
One day after all the men from all the different villages had left, the man’s daughter stood out on the field and opened her arms, singing.
Her singing brought the village to her as well as her mother and father. They watched with puzzled eyes as nothing they did made her stop.
The girl was singing to call Mother Sun who came quietly and took the girl’s body as her own. Uncle Bear had told the man that the only way Mother Sun and Father Moon could be together is if he had eaten the sun. Uncle Bear did not say how, but the man had faith.
Mother Sun with their daughter’s voice, told the girl’s parents that she was still their daughter and always would be. Then she turned back to the sky and began to sing. This time, it was the Sun who sang and she called down the night and Father Moon.
Moon dipped low to gather her into his embrace. He said, “I will marry the Sun and finally know joy. Thank you, man, for doing this. We will never forget. “
The man’s wife wept, then. She understood.
“See?” Her husband said, a smile creasing his old, lined face. “Did I not promise you the sun and the moon?”
And so it is said, to this day–some women still feel the pull of the moon because of Mother Sun’s blood running warm in their veins. They stand out at night, arms spread, singing quietly for their love to come in the silver light.

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