A fiction Story by Susan Page

I was born in Alaska in a house my father built. I am a young man now. I like to sit in my rocker by the fire and remember a story he told me.

He would take a long slow puff on his pipe. He eyes glistened and became a window to his soul. “Son,” he would say, while he reached over, smiled and patted my knee. “I was born in an igloo. We were a small tribe of mostly family and a few friends who became family.”

He looked out the window, then he would stand and pace the wooden floor. “I only knew what a young boy would know, mostly from stories the elders told the children,” he said, “Until one day my father and I harnessed the dog sled and off we went in the direction of the mountains and the blue sky. I was happy! Only my father and me.

“Well after dark we stopped at a magical place. That was when I saw my first wooden house. It had doors and windows, furniture, you know, things I had never seen before.”

I pulled on my fathers hand, and looked up to his face. “Papa, when I grow up, I will have a wooden house.” The warmth of his smile filled me.

He took a deep breath. “All my childhood, I worked at menial jobs and saved my money for my house. When I married your mother I knew it was time. It was me and my friends who built this wooden house.”

He took another puff from his pipe. We both watched the smoke curl and disappear into the air. Then he continued. “One day I was sitting in the rocker where you sit now staring into that fire, when your mother sat on the floor by me.

She said, “My love, you have your beautiful wooden house, yet you look so sad!”

I remember squeezing her hand. I said, “My dear, I miss my Igloo.” She smiled. “Well, we can sell this house and go home to our family and friends.”

“No,” I said, “I will not go back. I will not build another igloo.”

The next day, your mother walked down the road through the snow and saw me building an igloo.”

“So, you are moving here.” she said. “You will live here and I will live in the wooden house. I will wait for you there.”

“Fear ran circles around me and through me. I grabbed her. “NO,” I said, “Then I will not miss my igloo, but my heart will be torn into rags because I will miss you.”

She laughed, the lines by her eyes crinkled.

I drew her close. “We will both live in the wooden house and when we want to remember the olden days, we will come here…..together. Before I met you I knew I didn’t just want a woman to live with, I wanted a woman I couldn’t live without.”

Then my father would sit back down and pat my knee again. Another puff on his pipe then he said, “You my son, must remember this always, don’t look for a woman you can live with. You must find a woman you cannot live without.”

I looked over at my wife as she brought our baby son to me. Tears came to my eyes. “Father,” I whispered to his memory standing next to me. “You are a very wise man. When my son is older, I will tell him your story and hopefully your story and your love will pass down for all generations to come. I honor you.”

I could swear I felt the warmth of his smile and I smelled the smoke from his pipe.

Channeled by Susan Page

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.