Monday, February 28, 2005

"The Bear of Wolf Creek, Installment 2"

By: Michael Akerman

Installment 1

"Once upon a time, there was a huntin'-woman named Sally Mae Sue Ellison Grant. That was her name, but seein' as she didn't like usin' a lot of words, and she had found herself in what mos' folks considered a field of work for men, she shortened that name herself. People jes' called her Big Sue.

"Anyways, Big Sue was of the hunter persuasion, in that she lived by her lonesome out in the woods and hunted and tracked rabbits and 'coons and the like, 's well as the occasional ven'son, so's she could sell the meat and fur to buy supplies. Now, she liked bein' a hunter, 'cause she could support herself jes' fine without buyin' food nor clothes, but makin' them herself. She done spent her days trackin' through the woods, followin' critters and greeting the occasional passerby with a pert nod.

"One day Big Sue was doin' jes' that, when she came by Wolf Creek. It was one of those nice likkle cricks the runs on through the woods hereabouts: only a few feet deep, but so full of fish it was like as if they was going to spill out onto the banks! Big Sue says to herself, "Now this here looks to be a good spot fo' fishin'," an' so she sat down and thought for a second, drawin' herself a map in her head, so's she could come back later.

"As Sue was so occupied, she heard the soft pad of feet. Now Sue was an experienced hunter: she could tell rabbit steps from 'coon steps from people steps easily. And she had heard these steps before. Before she even turned around, she knew she was face-to-face with a bear!"

"Did the bear getter, Ol' Pete?" one of the youngin's asked. Ol' Pete was 'bout to answer when Likkle Pete chimed in.

"I bet she bearly got away," Likkle Pete said, grinnin'.

"Watch yo' tongue, boy," said Ol' Pete. He turned back toward the circle of youngin's who was waiting patiently for the story. "Turns out she didn't need to get away," said Ol' Pete.