supplication to the gods that inhabit my bow

weird archery exercise

we twist our fingers together, 
paired and partnered off, 
and i look at her 

she looks scared. 
she shouldn't be, 
but this is nerve-wracking

we're only going to do this for one round.
and then it's back to the usual twang and tug 
of our own bowstrings under raw fingers

i take her bow, its weight unfamiliar in my hands, 
because i'm used to an 18-pound draw, 
and this is a 15, 14, at most

it bends unnaturally in my hands, 
draws easily and gives way as i try to shoot

and the sight's all out of whack, 
as the wooden limbs of the bow curve towards me
and i take a deep breath


the arrow hits the target, 
right on the corner of the paper. 

next to me, my friend struggles to draw. 
her arms are stick-thin, 
and she's used to adjusting her anchor point before shooting
but she can't do that with my bow - 
it's tense and you have to follow through

her arrow embeds itself in the farthest ring of white. 
i breathe out. 

Rabbit Shake turns to me, 
nervous smile on her lips, 
and i hand her bow back. 
she does the same. 

we are unnerved, 
shifted out of place by the change, 
but it will be alright. 

our draws are familiar this time. 

The End

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