The Drums of Katuah Kitchen

19th Rainbow Family Gathering of the Tribes
July 1-7, 1990, Superior Forest, Minnesota


Coming up the main trail I can tell I’m getting close:
the drums. Have I missed dinner?

Climbing the mud path through the trees
I can hear among the hollow harmony of drumskins
a clatter of forks and spoons on plates and cups:
just in time. I join the serving line.

The drummers are gathered in the kitchen
where the servers ladle soup and smile.
My dish is a deli container. My spoon is a groundscore.
I dig them from my daypack and join the drumming.

Ho! drummers of Katuah kitchen, don’t you
hear the thunder? Are your tarps tight?
Are your dry clothes sealed in plastic?
Careful with that rhythm stolen from the rain!

Someone fills a pot to keep some soup warm
for the drummers. They thunder on
till everyone is fed and all the plates and cups
and forks and spoons are clean.

The leftovers will keep awhile.
The drums of Katuah thunder on.