The Little Old Man That Dreamed He Could Fly
by Gene Amondson
From the woods behind his house he took trees and carved puppets, puppets that hung on a string.
He carved little things that hung on a string, big things, tall things, short things, things on strings. Oh, just lots of things, but sad enough these things could not fly.
Just north of Possum Creek on this quiet island, the old man lived deep in the woods surrounded in silence.
His place had cabins and shacks that held tools, toys, old things, used things, and so much more.
These cabins were once places for children to play, where chickens laid eggs, and cats had their kittens as ducks swam by in the creek and raccoons washed their faces and greeted the day.
Now it was late so the little old man put away his chisels, paint brushes and saws and nodded to the things he had made. He shook hands with the wooden bears, toy soldiers, dogs, mice that smiled and puppets that hung on a string. He hugged the wooden horse almost hidden by cobwebs.
He dusted his hat and entered the cabin, so still except for the fire that crackled and warmed the room with it's light.
He turned up the lantern, ate some stew that had been warming on the stove, and settle down for the night in his chair. It was not long and out of the chair came loud earth shaking snores and some jerks of his legs that called him to bed, while mice carried crumbs from under the table.
He put on his long, black woolen underwear, fluffed up the pillow and thought how wonderful to be there. Then he pondered, could this be the night that an old dream would reappear, the dream of flying to places never before seen. These dreams were not often, but he loved these dreams of flying through the air.
These dreams were about friends and childhood days, about creeks he had waded and trees he had climbed until they started to bend. These rides on the trees were like flying.
OH, NOT A SOUND, NOT A PEEP AS HE WAS LEAVING HIS SLEEP.
It was not a walk, nor a fear.
He was UP, UP in the air.
Out of his bed and into the kitcheny smells, he flew past the chimney so warm. He was out of the cabin into the dark winter's crisp air.
He was flying, sweeping upward into the air.
Soon the cabins appeared smaller and smaller. He passed Possum Creek and the trees, the lights from the ferries and the houses ashore. He flew to the west and under the sun past the giant Olympic Peaks.
What a sight! He flew over the waters and lands far away. He waved to the children whose words were so strange. He saw some were hungry. What must he do?
He dug into his bulging pockets (now black woollen long johns do not have pockets, but sometimes old people have things a bit strange).
He emptied his pockets, an endless supply of Aunt Murney's oatmeal cookies fell from the sky.
As he gazed further he saw some needed shoes, some nickers, even a dress. So, out of the other pocket he threw them something like coins. They were bright shining gold nuggets, that looked like diamonds of gold. Now brighter than most because they were Possum Creek Gold. The children leaped and jumped for the gold nuggets until their pockets were full.
The children loved him and begged him never to go, as he headed higher into the sky. They watched as he got smaller and smaller.
It was not a bit tiring, but you know old people have to head home for no reason at all. He leaned to the left. He looked to the right, wiped off his old glasses and set off into the night.
He was flying over the waters and tall, tall trees below. A glimpse at the Olympics, then he noticed the smoke from his old cabin below. What a welcoming sight to a little old traveler that had left for the night.
His cat lifted one eye and the dog tossed him a yaw. Then he looked at the words on the wall, "Home Sweet Home" and in an instant, he finished the night.
Tonight you have heard the little old man's tale, but remember to be careful who you tell because some cannot fly. But if by chance you have such a flight, make sure you look out for the little old man who knew he could fly in the night.
Gene Amondson © 2008|
All Rights Reserved
(use by permission only)