A Sketch for a Winter’s Night

Years ago, I went hunting deep in the woods. Late that day, at the end of my hunt, I fell from a bluff and twisted my right ankle. Alone, I started for home.


A sketch for a winter’s night. From Dark Oak’s sketchbook. 2017

Night fell and the moon came up.

The Mind is a Terrible Thing.

Icy fingers, clumsy, cold feet, and throbbing pain in my ankle traveled with me across the rocky, snow-slick ground, seldom seen dead fall branches plucking at me in the night. Anger, as much as self preservation, fed my determination  to return.

Breaking at last from the trees, I again wondered where were the sweep of flashlights? Where were the strained and muffled shouts of action? Where were the 4×4’s racing here and there intent on my rescue?

As I limped from the watching woods onto the moonlit snowfield, the yellow light of home a warm beacon in the far distance, a thought flitted like a crazed bat across my mind: That I had died at the bottom of that bluff, perhaps years ago, and just now had the strength of spirit to return. For a just a flash, the resentment of the Dead flowed through me.