Friday, October 28, 2011

I Am Not A Hunter

   Mother's save stuff, the attempts of their children, the work on the refridgerator door, the drawings, first paintings and classroom assignments.  Kids see no value other than in just getting it done, the job over and on time.  My mother saved a lot.  I have my very first little fired clay sculpture I made in the second grade under the guidance of the visiting art teacher, "Mrs Albright".  She would come to our class on Thursday's and we would have a two hour session, always a different medium, paper and paints and clay strewn about the classroom.  She must have been good at what she did because I still remember her name.
   I can't imagine teaching art like that, two hours, once a week, trying to get a tightly focussed classroom in a jumble of second graders who would rather be outside playing baseball or teasing the girls with snakes.  I remember lots of butcher paper.  She had huge sheets of the stuff and we would always begin by covering our desks in an attempt to keep them unpainted.
   I think I have every Geography report I ever did all through Jr. High School, reports on different countries full of statistics and maps.  I was never very good at drawing the maps but got enough extra points on the reports themselves to make up for my lack of drawing skills.  Foreign cultures intrigued me and studying them was one of my favorite things to do.  How do other people live? and what do they think about?  Why do they do this and that while we may do that and this?
   By the time I was in High School my mother had collected several boxes of my school work, never displayed, of course.  Just saved, sort of stuffed into the back of the closet.  I think from my mother I learned this squirreling away of stuff.  It was while still in High School when I began my first attempts at poetry, writing little stories and teasing words from thought.  I have told the story of acquiring a little printing press and it was in High School that I began printing things that I wrote.  The very worst garbage looks so professional and beautiful once it is printed to perfection on really good quality paper.
   Somewhere in the back of a closet somewhere in this house I still have almost everything I have ever written and certainly everything I printed out.
   But I don't have the "Deer Hunting Story".  I remember writing it.  It is one of those vivid childhood memories.  It was this story that brought me to some kind of truth.  I could lie.
   I knew nothing about hunting, no family members hunted.  None of my friends were hunters.  Luckily my teacher, Miss Westen didn't either.  My story took place over the summer and deer hunting I came to realize is a Fall event.  October, in the autumn when it becomes cold and the leaves have turned and the deer have raised their young.  I have since learned to research my stories a little better so timing and the seasons won't get me caught up in a lie.
   Maybe we were poaching?  Catching the deer early in the season while they were still grazing in the lowlands, totally unaware of the hunters who were after them?  Could be, I do not remember all of the details.  The story was full of traditions that never were.  Maybe a bit like happy Christmases that really weren't.  I remember skining the deer with my father's knife.  I remember the story anyway, in reality there was no blood other than that I may have imagined.
   There was a big fire pit, an on going tradition of cooking the deer, the first deer of the season, in a big fire pit, hand dug with my uncles (who were never really there, remember), lined with stones and simmering in the heat like a Hawaiian pig.
   It was a great story, especially from the mind of a third grader and I wish I had it.  I wonder how it escaped my mother? Never found it's way into the box at the back of the closet?

What I do now is HERE


Clipped Wings said...

Perhaps more like wishful thinking, your deer hunting story...artistic freedom, LOL. My mom kept everything of mine, except she stashed it all over the house. Much was lost or damaged, but I still have some of my childhood artwork, embroidery and poems. It's fun to look at all that stuff once in a while.

Tiffiny said...

It's terrible when you lose a piece of writing you wish you still had. I have lost many although my mother still has a hand made book of poems I wrote in the second grade. It's nice to go back a look at things such as these. Nice post, really enjoyed it. ;)

conservativelybohemian said...

My mom saved stuff from when I was growing up too, though no school work or art. Cards. She saved all the cards. I myself saves stuff from my kids and I also have all my writing assignments from when I was in college. I think. I used to have them. Now where did I put those...???

Kay said...

I have a crayon picture I drew in Grade school with an orange cat, elf and caterpillar. I framed it and put it with my paintings for a painting class critique in 2009. Everyone thought I had done it recently rather than 50 years ago!!! Apparently my style has not progressed at all!