Three Quotes and a Story

Brief Story

Do you remember long ago, when we used to go for picnics at Tokul Creek below the falls? An incident from one of those picnics has re-occurred in my memory many times. It was a hot summer, and Phil and I and some other kids were allowed to wade and play on the edge of the creek. I’d found a piece of driftwood that looked like a bull. Maybe it was a horse--I can’t remember exactly. Anyway, I cherished it, fondled it, was in love with it, and was making a “house” for it out of stones in the water. I set down to place a big rock, and one of the other kids picked up my horse/bull and threw it in the swift part of the creek! I screamed and yelled--I can see it now being carried inexorably away on the fast-moving water.

I think I’ve been haunted by that pain all my life. Isn’t it curious how we carry with us those well tended tragedies for so long? Indeed it flavors our whole life. I still catch my breath at a piece of driftwood, or a gesture, or a cloud that resembles that original lost love. I must be away--to whittle on my new big log--and try to resurrect the image of that creature by the creek.”

Clayton Lewis: June 4, 1981


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