Author Topic: Legend of Toucan Moon---Revised  (Read 1627 times)

Offline ZooDoc

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Legend of Toucan Moon---Revised
« on: April 17, 2006, 04:47:13 PM »
LEGEND OF TOUCAN MOON

A spectacular sunset glorifies the jungle, as sights and sounds of howler monkeys, hyacinth macaws, a black jaguar and the breathtaking 1,000-foot falls add to the magnificence of the gorgeous sunset.  Suddenly sacrificial drums and ominous chants shatter the peaceful tranquility.   Boom! Boom! Boom!  A-m-m-m!  A-m-m-m!

A Mayan temple is nestled in the jungle’s over-growth, and hovering above the moss-covered ruins is a King Vulture.  Superstition would interpret this as doom in the offing.  Spiraling closer and closer to the temple, the vulture's eyes are transfixed on a colorful toucan perched atop the sacrificial alter.  Behind the toucan is a glowing, full moon.  When King Vulture comes near, the toucan flies away, frightened, not by the eater of carrion but by the screams of a woman.   

The woman is Xiuhsana Zamora, of Mayan/Spanish descent.  She and her fiancé Joaquin Sandoval are running from Maya warriors.  But alas! they get captured.  Each is pushed against a Cajun tree, with their safari shirts ripped open, and the point of a golden spear is pressed against each one’s abdomen.  Hearts beat furiously as a trickle of blood runs down. 

Instead of waiting for his meal, King Vulture flies away and skims the jungle—accompanied by country music, a sound seemingly out of place for this setting.  George Strait is singing:  “Like a feather flying high up in the sky on a windy day, I get carried away.”

Now a 32” Samsung monitor is in split screen, and on the left is a soaring condor, while Sirius satellite radio is playing on the right.  And Joaquin Sandoval, the late-30’s Latino, is at his computer, his dark bedroom lit only by the monitor.  He’s in striped boxers, and sweat is pouring down his face and soaking his yellow tank top emblazoned with a red pyramid, the logo reading:  “History Freak!”  When the monitor changes to a Lakers/Kings game on the left, and the country music stops, “write e-mail” appears on the right side of the screen. 

He speaks as he writes to his fiancé:  “Monday, March 6, 2006, 2:30 A.M., to: Zoodoc@AOL.com, from: Historyfreak@sbcglobal.net.  Subject:  Dream.  Xiuhsana, you’ll never believe the dream I just had!  Must be somehow connected to the research I’ve been doing lately.  I’ll tell you more when I see you on Tuesday.  By Sweetheart!”

In a San Diego State classroom, where the calendar/clock on the teacher’s desk reads “Tuesday, 3/7/06, 10:00 AM,” Professor Sandoval (sleeves rolled up, tie loose) awakens his drowsy class with this controversial topic:  “So you see, class, throughout history religion has played a major role in creating the perfect environment for not only acceptance but also approval of…[pointing at the blackboard]...the Practice of Human Sacrificing.  Not killing yourself, but killing another human being to honor the gods...  Mr. Hopkins?”

“Like the Incas, Aztecs and Mayas.”

“Bingo! ... Mr. Stewart?”

“Their religion was brutal.”

Hopkins:  “Yeah, ripping out someone’s HEART is pretty brutal.”

Miss Jones:  “Stop, you guys.  I’m going to vomit!”
 
 “Keep in mind class, that, although the practice sounds brutal to ‘civilized’ societies, the Nican Tlaca (or, indigenous peoples of Mexico and Central America) are very serious about their heritage and ancestry.  In fact...[picking up a paper from his desk]…according to this printout I got off the web this morning entitled ‘People of Anahuac,’ you’ll see how proactive the Mayan people are these days.  And I quote:  ‘European squatters are today stealing not just our land, they are stealing the wealth of our oil, our forests, our farmland and all of our other resources.  They are also stealing our honor, our dignity, and our sense of being one Anahuac independent nation.’  Miss Jones?”

“Do they still practice human sacrificing?”

“No, but….”
 
Miss Anani, a Beninese:  “Wow, Professor!  I mean, I know how proactive African-Americans are, an’ the Latinos an’ gays, but I had no idea the Mayan people of today are still fighting for their rights an’ recognition.”

“Yes.  Well, back to the subject of.…”  He points to the blackboard, but Miss Jones interrupts:  “Um, Professor Sandoval, was there ever a time when human sacrificing was banned, or something?”

With that question lingering, class ends.

 
 




ZooDoc, "Sculptor of Words"
"Success is a little like wrestling a gorilla. You do not quit when you're tired -You quit when the gorilla is tired." -Robert Strauss

Offline caliban1

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Re: Legend of Toucan Moon---Revised
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2006, 10:32:17 PM »
Hey ZD, That was great.  The description of the scene in the jungle, the bird imagery (symbolism too, I guess) and the scene in Sandoval's room are all very effective.  I also enjoyed the scene in the classroom.  The dialogue was excellent--I can hear it, see it. You really have the students down.

I did think the description of the couple being attacked by the Mayan warriors was too brief, even if it is a dream sequence.

I am very interested to read more of this, that is for sure.  As it happens, I love Mexico and am facinated by the Mayan people.  I haven't been as far south as Belize, but have met Mayan people on the Pacific Coast of Mexico and read a lot about their culture.  Your book is going to be interesting and so are you.

Hasta pronto,
Cal
It is all a metaphor.

Offline ZooDoc

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Re: Legend of Toucan Moon---Revised
« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2006, 12:01:06 AM »
Thanks Cal, you're a bud!  Never been to Langley, but I LOVED Vancouver.  Beautiful city.  What's Langley like?  I should be finishing up on the next installment of Toucan Moon shortly.  Then you'll find out some detail on ZooDoc, and why I chose that logname.  I hope I don't disappoint you.  Since we can only post in increments of about 500-800 words, you'll have to wait patiently for the really suspenseful stuff.  The whole short story, which is only the intro to Toucan Moon the screenplay, and possibly a novel as well, is about 4500 words.  (Obviously in a novel you have tons of room to expound on description, but a screenplay is cut-to-the-bone description-- because the camera shows everything--with the screenplay focussing mainly on scene location and time, action and dialogue.)  Thanks again for your support, Cal.  I'll try to be equally supportive of your wonderful works of creativity.  ZD
ZooDoc, "Sculptor of Words"
"Success is a little like wrestling a gorilla. You do not quit when you're tired -You quit when the gorilla is tired." -Robert Strauss

sjreed56

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Re: Legend of Toucan Moon---Revised
« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2006, 12:55:52 AM »
Yes, I like the revisions. I agree that the attack by the Maya warriors might be too brief.  ~ Still intrigued.

Offline ZooDoc

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Re: Legend of Toucan Moon---Revised
« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2006, 01:00:28 AM »
As mentioned, it is just a dream.  It's designed to stimulate interest in and foreshadow what's going to come later.  Too much right now would ruin things.  Thanks Sherry.  Don't tell anybody that you've unmasked Batman.  ZD
ZooDoc, "Sculptor of Words"
"Success is a little like wrestling a gorilla. You do not quit when you're tired -You quit when the gorilla is tired." -Robert Strauss