Spirit of Chiha Tanka, Lakota Sioux myth of 150 years ago,
The legend—warriors believed was an unbeatable deadly foe.
Tale from the nights of a late autumn eve? This I would never know.
All I know is my search would begin the eve of Halloween; I had to go.
In Wyoming, at Devils Tower, is where to begin. This I was told,
Headed to the Black Hills in the late autumn as this story unfolds.
Last day of October, it is said the creature appears under the full moon,
If this was true, I would have his head on a stick by the next day at noon.
Not the typical fall day, but full of rain, fog, and a dampening mist,
Chiha Tanka legend in my mind, but modern weapons filled my fist.
150 years have passed, the legend. I knew it to be true. Most didn’t believe,
It was an adventure, and the fame, is what I hoped and dreamed to achieve.
Sunset, I found the forest of evergreens—base of Devils Tower of ancient lore.
Daylight faded, the night closed in—full moon, enough light to explore some more.
The night became chilled as the hours passed, with no Chiha Tanka in sight,
Suddenly the night was filled with the creature’s eerie wail. I almost took flight.
There, at the edge of the trees, the myth of Chiha Tanka of the legendary tale,
My courage, bravery, of the battle to kill the creature, knowing now I would fail.
Nine feet tall, matted hair, Chiha Tanka, the legend, the myth, was an absolute fact,
Overhead, the moon shimmered off his fangs. He lowered himself, ready to attack.
No way in Hell would I defeat such a creature! What had I gotten myself into?
Death was forthcoming at the fangs of the legend of the ancient Lakota Sioux.
Then silence, as Devils Tower changed, and the air became bitterly cold.
Stars disappeared—the stillness—no forest sounds at Devils Tower threshold.
Closing my eyes, I shivered, not from the cold mist, but from my intensifying dread,
Wondering why I was still alive, why was I still here, why I was not dead?
Slowly opening my eyes, Chiha Tanka was still there, but glimmered in the night,
One last howl of the ages, the creature, shimmered, then disappeared out of sight.
I knew now I had seen the spirit from long ago. My thoughts cleared, and it hit home.
The essence, a ghost, which happens on a late autumn eve, when Chiha Tanka still roams.
Kurt James © 2022
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