Silver Creek


We found her at the mouth of Silver Creek.

We found her beside a tree stump sharpened to a point by the beavers who regularly felled the trees to transform Silver Creek into a pond quiet and anonymous and secret.

Thirty years back, we used to step across that creek. How many gallons of water filled this place now?

We found her where I've stood with my hands in the back pockets of my jeans, watching the concentric circles—echoes of a stone thrown—widen and ripple before fading away to stillness.

But a body of water—even a pond—is never stagnant, even when it appears to be. And my daughter, so silent and still, is so much more than people think she is.

I hate when her schoolmates mock her.

I hate it more when they ignore her.

I'd told her time and time again not to come down here alone. There are hunters in these woods. And the water is deep.

But how can you keep a child from nature?

And should you, even if you could?

We found her facing the cattails growing in the icy marshland and I remembered, as I ran, how I tried once upon a time to catch a trout with one, and failed.

We found one of her red boots turned upside down in the snow. We found her orange scarf coated with ice. We found her sitting on a log staring out over the water.

“Cari!” I shouted.

She turned and gave me a toothless grin. She stood barefoot in the snow and laughed.

I pulled my cell phone from my pocket and dialed. “We found her.” I picked her up and wrapped her in my jacket. “Let's go home,” I said.

The beavers will continue cutting their trees.

Her classmates will continue laughing at my daughter.

And she will continue to find solace among nature, beside the laughing stream.

This was written for this week's Trifecta Writing Challenge. The word was mouth.






Labels: ,

Writing in the Margins, Bursting at the Seams: Silver Creek

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Silver Creek


We found her at the mouth of Silver Creek.

We found her beside a tree stump sharpened to a point by the beavers who regularly felled the trees to transform Silver Creek into a pond quiet and anonymous and secret.

Thirty years back, we used to step across that creek. How many gallons of water filled this place now?

We found her where I've stood with my hands in the back pockets of my jeans, watching the concentric circles—echoes of a stone thrown—widen and ripple before fading away to stillness.

But a body of water—even a pond—is never stagnant, even when it appears to be. And my daughter, so silent and still, is so much more than people think she is.

I hate when her schoolmates mock her.

I hate it more when they ignore her.

I'd told her time and time again not to come down here alone. There are hunters in these woods. And the water is deep.

But how can you keep a child from nature?

And should you, even if you could?

We found her facing the cattails growing in the icy marshland and I remembered, as I ran, how I tried once upon a time to catch a trout with one, and failed.

We found one of her red boots turned upside down in the snow. We found her orange scarf coated with ice. We found her sitting on a log staring out over the water.

“Cari!” I shouted.

She turned and gave me a toothless grin. She stood barefoot in the snow and laughed.

I pulled my cell phone from my pocket and dialed. “We found her.” I picked her up and wrapped her in my jacket. “Let's go home,” I said.

The beavers will continue cutting their trees.

Her classmates will continue laughing at my daughter.

And she will continue to find solace among nature, beside the laughing stream.

This was written for this week's Trifecta Writing Challenge. The word was mouth.






Labels: ,

18 Comments:

At January 29, 2013 at 6:02 PM , Anonymous ST said...

so vivid and touching. Great writing as always.

 
At January 29, 2013 at 11:09 PM , Blogger uneven steven said...

enthralling write :-)

 
At January 30, 2013 at 12:33 AM , Blogger Sandra Crook said...

Beautifully done.

 
At January 30, 2013 at 2:26 AM , Anonymous rashmenon said...

ah, lovely! so vivid and such great attention to detail.

 
At January 30, 2013 at 2:58 AM , Blogger kymm said...

Scary, and beautiful.

 
At January 30, 2013 at 6:20 AM , OpenID whispatory said...

Truly scary! I'm so glad she was found relatively in one piece, so many of the entries this week have been so bloodthirsty I was really worried and though my heart ached for a little girl on the edges of society that visceral reaction was rolled over by relief that she was found, loved and seen so clearly by her mother. Whew!

 
At January 30, 2013 at 12:32 PM , Anonymous Annabelle said...

I love the interspersed memories of nature's healing. You do a great job of keeping the tensions going here; I was a little nervous about whether she'd be okay when she was found.

 
At January 30, 2013 at 12:44 PM , Blogger Bo said...

Really good writing!

 
At January 30, 2013 at 12:47 PM , Anonymous Lance said...

I went dark and on my God something and somebody is dead and it's awful....

Of course you write too well to make it that quick, easy and predictable. good job.

 
At January 30, 2013 at 3:20 PM , Blogger Stephanie B. @B4Steph said...

Ethereal comes to mind. Beautiful writing. I'm glad she was alive. You took us on a ride, and then relief. Terrific.

 
At January 30, 2013 at 3:34 PM , Blogger j umbaugh said...

GREAT DISCRIPTIVE WRITING

 
At January 30, 2013 at 6:17 PM , Blogger Draug said...

This was eerie but good. I thought at first they had found her dead. The ending was a relief.

 
At January 30, 2013 at 7:53 PM , OpenID tenwordstory said...

All I could think throughout the entire story was poor little girl. :( I also wonder if she's autistic from this story. Don't know why but for some reason it just sounds like something is off with her.

 
At January 31, 2013 at 12:05 PM , OpenID humantriumphant said...

what a mouth-full of toothless-grinned joy! nice turn of the tides :)

 
At January 31, 2013 at 12:59 PM , Anonymous barbara said...

the scariest thing for a parent . . . the loss of a child, if just for a time. well done.

there is a repeat of "let's go home" and the wrapping in a coat - was that intentional?

 
At February 1, 2013 at 9:45 AM , Blogger Atreyee said...

Whew!My heart had dropped thinking the unthinkable-so glad that she was safe-great piece:-)

 
At February 1, 2013 at 1:53 PM , Anonymous Girl with a New Life said...

There was something stunning about your imagery here...the concentric circles...red boots turned upside down in the snow.

 
At February 2, 2013 at 1:31 PM , Blogger Cameron said...

I was frightened for her! So glad it was only an escape to the pond. This was beautifully done.

 

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home