Bones. The great equalizer. We all have them. We will not live a moment of our lives where they are not playing some important function for the body. Even in death, they decompose far later than the rest of the body. Bones tell us many things. Burial location, height, cause of death, history of injuries, identity, etc. Experience in archaeological work comes with being a student of the Rubenstein School. A great deal of my college career has been spent studying bones. In a way, I translate what stories they tell, what secrets they hold, what information they give us. Even after all of my years of experience, I am still struggling to find an explanation as to what I found in the fields of UVM’s CREAM farm.
On October 6th me and my team were out in the fields of the farm performing a dig. Our digsite was an agricultural field that was used for growing corn this summer. Harvest had come for the field before we did, and we began our dig towards the treeline away from the road. We began studying the site by harvesting soil cores using an augur. Color and texture tests were performed and we determined this to be a well drained site with a predominately calcium based soil. This makes sense for this area of the Champlain Valley but what did not make sense is the concentration of calcium.
We performed more tests nearer to the trees. About 30 yards away from the end of the field, our augur wouldn’t go more than an inch into the ground. We began excavating around it, revealing many bones. Countless bones, bones by the thousands, it became overwhelming. The soil was so high in calcium due to millions of cow bones decomposing in the field. We had been digging for hours at this point with a 6’x6’ cube of earth carved out. We still kept finding them. After a phone call with the VT geological survey, another crew came out and began using a special machine that uses sound waves to determine what is under the soil below the machine. When the night was over, they informed me that there was an amount of bones present in the field to exceed the amount under the streets of Paris.
I drove out before sunrise, and when I arrived to see this for myself I noticed a flash of red light above me. It swooped into the trees and towards the field. I began driving faster. When I arrived in the field, the crew was gone. The hole was no longer a hole: as if the earth itself had never changed. There was no sign of any dig or study at the digsite now. All that remained was the sound of flapping wings above me.
I met his bright burning hot red eyes. It was the man from my dreams. The moth from my nightmares. These bones were brought there by the Mothman of Point Pleasant, West Virginia. He spoke, not aloud, but with his mind, and told me “Believe believe. Yes you can. Believe in the power of the Mothman”. “I won’t let you get away with this!”, I responded. “Foolish mortal”, he rumbled, “I already have”.
Next thing I remember, it was sunrise. Mothman was gone, off to terrorize another mind. I hope that you are not next, that you shall be free from his cacophony of madness. The Mothman Prophecies are true, he has returned. Keep your eyes in the skies this Halloween season, you never know what may dart across the horizon.
Categories: around town, November 3, 2020