Saturday, December 1, 2018

Great God Montagawea

"Oh Great God Montagawea, grant us your favor," the assembly implored in unison. The statue stood still as the theatrics began.

First came the swaying and chanting starting with a low rumble. Over the next minute or so the pitch climbed higher and the swaying turned to stepping then to jumping. What had been a low "ohm" was now shrill exclamations of "awhoo!"

At the sound of a whip-crack, the assembly fell to their knees, silent. The rumbling began again, slowly, gently. It again edged toward ferver, the mass of people now creating waves with their bodies as they plunged down to touch the ground with their foreheads then shot up straight to stretch their arms into the sky. At the height of the activity again a whip cracked. The assembly dove to the floor.

The process repeated itself a third time, just with everyone laying down and rolling as a mass of snakes. Once again the whip cracked. In a moment, everyone was back on their feet.

"Oh Great God Montagawea, grant us your favor," the assembly knew the script.

"Oh children, I shall grant you one favor," a voice boomed from the statue. Everyone froze for a moment, then began looking around in confusion. This was a scripted worship ceremony - never in history had the Great God answered! The whole point was to ask for a hypothetical favor - a good crop yield, good health, victory in battle - and here the Great God was asking them to pick one and run with it? Madness.

As the chaos began to set in, a whip cracked and he priest called for quiet. They announced that they would confer for a moment with the elders and come up with the best favor to ask - the favor that would most benefit the assembly and not cause strife (or, indeed, backfire). The Great God Montagawea was known to be a bit of a joker and the lore and legends told of many occasions he used his powers just to make himself laugh.

With the lore in mind, a debate raged. "If we ask for a bountiful harvest, do you think he'll also send a plague of rats?" "If we ask for peace with our neighbors, might it be because a sickness will strike all of us down?" "If we simply ask for good health for all, might it cause war and famine?" "We must choose something - health? peace? prosperity?"

The oldest, wisest priest cleared his throat. "I say we gamble on peace." The others generally agreed, nodding their heads and murmuring their assent. The old man stepped forth.

"Oh Great God Montagawea, we have our wish." The priest said, pausing theatrically.

"I want a bigger dick!" a voice called out from the crowd.

Over the gasps and the commotion of the crowd, a booming voice spoke.


[written 17 September 2018]

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