The Sacred Twin Story
discussing their dreams and four cups of coffee Josh darted to his pick-up
truck and returned with his crossbow.
I can hit it?" he said, pulling out an arrow and pointing it at an old wooden
sign nailed to a tree by the river. He let the arrow go before Thomas could
reply, scoring a direct hit. The arrow made a zinging sound as it flew, which for
some reason made them both laugh. He showed him how to load it, pull the arrow
back and how to aim. Thomas let the arrow go at twenty yards away, the impact a
dull thud that caused them to laugh again. Loading another, Thomas looked
around for another target. He pointed at a displaced scarecrow perched in the
hate scarecrows," said Josh. "Bad medicine. Crows are our friends. They are not
the bravest of the winged ones but they are the smartest." Adding arc for the
distance, Thomas let the arrow go, sailing through the air and striking the
scarecrow in the thigh. It stuck. The muted thud of impact caused more laughter
but Thomas is also laughing at the red welt on his brother's forehead. The
spark had broken the skin.
are good medicine," he went on, "valued as highly as the eagle, which is
considered the closest thing to Creator on earth." As Thomas loaded another
arrow, Josh went into his trailer and came out with his bearskin.
a story about twins that Grandfather told me a few months ago, and there was
this one part that I wanted to tell you about."
twin, who was bigger and stronger than his other twin because he had been born
out of his father's magic - he was a medicine man - had chosen to go live in
the forest, but after some years he returned and saw his twin. They got on well
together and developed a passion for bows and arrows. Then one day the twin
from the forest said to his brother: ‘The Great Father Above has special
gifts to give us as we reach manhood. He promised me the gifts when I was a
very little boy living in the forest. Now I will climb high in this tree and
see a vision, a dream. All my bones will drop out of my body and fall to the
ground. The head bone will fall first of all. You will think that I am dead,
but it will not be so.'
take my bones,' says the bigger twin to his brother, ‘and put them in a pile,
with the head bone on top. Cover the pile with my buffalo calf robe and then
shoot the black arrow into the air. Then, just as we did as young kids when we
played together and shot our arrows into the air to watch them turn and fall to
earth, call out to me: ‘Look out Brother! For the arrow is coming straight
towards you!' He agreed so the bigger twin climbs the tree up into the
clouds. He disappeared for a moment and then his bones fell from the tree. Just
has he had said, he gathered his brother's bones and placed the head bone on
top, covered them with the buffalo robe and then shot an arrow straight up in
the sky." Josh, with an unmistakable look of prankish exuberance in his eyes,
took out an arrow and fixed it in his crossbow.
are you doing?" Drawn towards him, not out of concern but from the mischievous
glint emitting from his eyes, Thomas couldn't help giggling.
try it," he said. Before he could say anything, Josh shot the arrow straight up
in the air right above them and then laid on the grass and covered himself with
the bearskin. Thomas watched the arrow go straight up in the sky in disbelief,
ignoring his reflex to run to the threshold of the cabin door. Josh didn't look
at the arrow; he only looked at his twin.
tell me when the arrow is coming down by yelling: ‘Look out Brother!'"
No time to argue, he squinted to the sky but couldn't see the arrow.
can't see it Josh!"
brother!" he replied, covering himself with the bearskin. "I have faith in
you." Thomas knew that the arrow had gone a long way up and fortunately it was
a blue sky, so he focused hard at the patch in the sky where it had been shot,
but still couldn't see it. He did some quick calculations that gave him a sense
of when it should fall. Actually fearing for his life, Thomas waited a moment
longer and then shouted:
out Brother!" Josh jumped out from beneath the bearskin, grabbed the
plastic table beside him and raised it above his head, causing his mug to fall
to the grass. Just as he did this, the arrow struck the table, the arrowhead
embedding itself an inch into the plastic. As if danger was the furthest thing
from his mind, and showing absolute faith in him, Josh continued his story
without missing a beat.
after the arrow had landed, the larger twin suddenly ran out from beneath the
buffalo robe just before the arrow struck." Remy sat on the grass in a state of
heightened laughter. Despite the fact that Thomas is also laughing, he was
burdened by a darker, more sinister concern.
knew you would save me mon frere," he said, voice strange.
"So sure enough, the bigger twin tells his
brother: ‘Now, you must also climb up and see your vision, your dream and
receive the powers the Great Father Above has reserved for you. I shall
do as you did for me, and we will meet here below afterwards.' Just as his
brother had done, he climbed the tree and reached the clouds where he had his
vision. His bones fell to the ground where his twin piled his bones together
with the head bone on top, and then covered him with a buffalo robe. He shot a
blue arrow up in the sky-‘"
way Josh!" He already knew what was going to happen. Sure enough he took out
another arrow and shot it straight up in the air over Thomas's head, bypassing
on the grass Tommy," he said. "You can rely on me. I'll save you from the
arrow. Get under the bearskin. It's important we go through this initiation."
His eyes faced the sky and his squint showed how hard he was trying to locate
you see it?" He was focused on the arrow against the backdrop of blue sky.
me, man." He stood just outside the threshold of the door protecting his eyes
from the sun. Suddenly he pointed.
out Brother, for the arrow is coming straight towards you!" he yelled.
Thomas threw off the bearskin and grabbed the table just as the arrow smashed
into the middle of the table. The quivering sound of the arrow striking the
plastic made Josh crack up with a serious case of scheudenfreuden
laughter. Both arrows were stuck in the table side by side, a sight that caused
Josh to keel over happy as a kid, but one that caused Thomas to wonder what was
driving him to do this.
his head to get rid of his laughter, he continued the story with his best
twin got up healthier than ever from beneath the buffalo robe. They looked at
each other and the twin from the forest said: ‘What gift did you receive?'
asked the twin from the forest. 'Listen' he replied. He opened his mouth and
spoke a word that rumbled like an earthquake off the trees and rocks. 'We will
call you by the name Thunder,' says the twin from the forest. 'What
powers did you receive?' asked Thunder. 'Look,' he said, and opened his mouth
and spoke a word that lashed out like flames across the sky.
will call you by the name Lightning,' said Thunder. And from that point
on the twins had their new powers and new manhood names." Josh picked up his
coffee mug and squatted beside the river.
you see?" he asked. Thomas could sense there was something important inside him
that he was trying to communicate, and that all he needed was a pair of sincere
ears; the ears of his twin brother. Semi-dormant guilt stirred at the thought
of returning to the Far East in a week.
Thunder and I'm Lightning," he replied. "Is that your point?"
is secondary to our gift," said Rainbow Thunderbird, placing his crossbow on
the table between the two arrows.
could've just told me the story."
go see Grandfather," he said casually. "He wants to meet you."