The Temple of Gros Morne
On the eighth day, the divine spirit raged, smashed stars and planets, tore their metal guts, threw them in the whirlpool
of a hissing inferno. Blind with rage, she stumbled and the whirlpool
sucked her to its bottom.
Dazed, the spirit freed itself, seeking respite.
She stretched golden wings over Newfoundland,
Your image is eternally above my throne.
Western Brook Pond caresses my weary eyes.
My sorrow flows in delicate waterfalls.
Will you be my temple?
Spirits shaved the mountain peak, flattened the top
and called it Tableland Mountain.
Gently the spirit threw all plants, shrubs and trees to the valley
and forbade them to come back.
Angels injected iron and copper into the mountain slopes.
Playfully twisted and shook the earth’s mantle.
Spread it over the mount plateau.
Commanded animals and people,
“Let it be my altar.
You may sacrifice.”
It was the time when people became animals
and animals became people just by wishing it.
The caribou and moose sacrificed humans
and humans sacrificed snakes.
Red foxes sacrificed brown, long-eared rabbits.
Blood gushed into the valley.
Plants and shrubs became drunk
and lifted sheaves in a dance
to meet the humans and animals in flight, dancing upside down.
The feast echoed in heaven and angels abandoned their chores and danced.
Even today the rocks may attack a hiker and draw blood from his forehead
just as they attacked John in July 2001 and cut his forehead.
The divine spirit breathed upon the mountain and cleansed it.
The spirit summoned a band of angels who were frolicking
in the depths of the sweet spring
and asked them to raise the mountains around one bay,
create an inner fjord.
Angels raised peaks,
directed secret springs to nourish the lake.
Western Brook Pond named itself.
To this day nobody knows the source of the pond.
For ages depth maiden angels bathed
every dawn, sang their first hymns while the four waterfalls
sprayed the lake with sweet mist.
Gros Morne smiled in the faces of Bonne and Bull Bays,
fell silent at nightfall.