February 7, 2014

David Quammen's "Walking Out"

I love it when I come across an amazing new story, one that sticks with me.  Someone on Facebook linked to this great David Quammen story, "Walking Out."  It reminds me of Jack London's "To Build a Fire."  Nothing more compelling than life and death.  You should go and read the whole thing immediately, but I wanted to highlight this part.  Isn't it great how this dialog says so much about the father and son's relationship and the father and mother's relationship? Amazing stuff.

David Quammen, by Joel Sartore (via)

"We have a moose tag," his father shouted.

The boy said nothing. He refused to care what it meant, that they had a moose tag.

"I've got one picked out. A bull. I've stalked him for two weeks. Up in the Crazies. When we get to the cabin, we'll build a good roaring fire." With only the charade of a pause, he added, "Your mother." It was said like a question. The boy waited. "How is she?"

"All right, I guess." Over the jeep's howl, with the wind stealing his voice, the boy too had to shout.

"Are you friends with her?"

"I guess so."

"Is she still a beautiful lady?"

"I don't know. I guess so. I don't know that."

"You must know that. Is she starting to get wrinkled like me? Does she seem worried and sad? Or is she just still a fine beautiful lady? You must know that."

"She's still a beautiful lady, I guess."

"Did she tell you any messages for me?"

"She said … she said I should give you her love," the boy lied, impulsively and clumsily. He was at once embarrassed that he done it.

"Oh," his father said. "Thank you, David."

No comments: