As a child, I never read the book Where The Wild Things Are..... I didn't need to....
My dad is the youngster in front of his dad, beside his uncle, ready to go huntin'...
In our family, coon huntin' has been a pastime for three generations, and a bit of this Americana sport lives on today. Though Dad no longer owns or raises coon hounds, when my cousin stopped by Friday night to run the dogs behind our house, that old sense of adventure became palpable once more, reminding me of my childhood when I walked in the shadow of my dad's footsteps through the woods in the dark. I recalled listening for the bay of the hounds, dodging tree branches that snapped back at my face from my father's shoulders on the path in front of me.
My son, Ben, age 13, first coon hunt.
Through my childhood, it was my job to handle the puppies and keep them tame before they sold. I knew no other school friends, let alone girlfriends, who'd helped their father's handle show dogs, or sat on a cold cement garage step to watch the hunters skin and tan the furs night after night. At the time, for a young girl who struggled to read, it was more exciting than anything on the bookshelf.
Dad & Me Cousin Drew & Emily
So when my cousin, Drew, stopped by Friday night and my husband decided to head to the woods with "the boys" and their dogs, I smiled inwardly when my grown daughter jolted for her boots and hollered "wait for me, Daddy!"
She came back from the woods smiling from ear to ear. Having been snapped in the face with a tree branch, she'd been initiated into the nighttime ritual of their wildness. She'd heard the bay of the hounds and watched as they scored a catch. The furs are no longer worth what they were when I was a girl, but the adventure is still high. The wildness of tromping through the woods behind your dad and your cousins, still high value. Somewhere on the moonlit path, beyond the light of home and hearth, she'd witnessed the fire and the fun of a hunter's heart.
She'd understood for a moment, that sacred part of a man's heart--the wild part.
Blog post by Anne Love-
Writer of Historical Romance inspired by her family roots.Nurse Practitioner by day.Wife, mother, writer by night.Coffee drinker--any time.
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