Art of Weaving Words
Writing stories is about art! Moral issues, family values, biblical themes? There is no place for such things within the fabric of story! So say some. Well, my stories are woven with hale moral fibers. But how does one deal with things of that nature (moral issues, family values, biblical themes) and maintain the wonder of story? Are my stories preachy-sappy or are they art? You be the judge. Here is a short short story for your consideration.
LITTLE EAGLE AND BLOSSOM
“Mother, what are you doing?” Little Eagle’s brow wrinkled in puzzlement.
“I am taking down the teepee, Little Eagle.” The Indian boy’s mother glanced toward the hill beyond, her face grim.
“But Mother, why are you taking down the teepee?” asked Little Eagle. The eight year old’s face sheeted with disappointment. “I like living here, Mother.”
Little Eagle enjoyed playing in the tall grass beyond their encampment and catching fish in the nearby stream. Grass Valley was a good place to live. Little Eagle’s mother looked at him and smiled kindly.
“The soldiers are coming, Little Eagle,” she sighed. “We cannot stay in Grass Valley. We must hurry to another valley beyond Sun Mountain.
Little Eagle’s eyes filled with puzzlement and his face wrinkled with question. “What are soldiers, Mother?”
“Soldiers are a strange tribe of men from across the eastern plain,” she explained.
“I do not want to leave Grass Valley, Mother.” The corners of Little Eagle’s mouth drooped. “I have a bow and arrows. I will protect Grass Valley from the soldier tribe.”
Little Eagle’s mother smiled and shook her head. “No, Little Eagle, you cannot fight the soldiers with your bow and arrows.”
Little Eagle’s eyebrows rose. “Yesterday I shot a prairie chicken with just one arrow,” he boasted.
From beyond the hill came the sound of rolling thunder. Little Eagle looked to the eastern sky. There were no clouds.
“The soldiers have fire sticks.” There was urgency in his mother’s voice. Forgetting the teepee, she hurriedly gathered their few belongings and set off in the opposite direction of the thunder. “Hurry, Little Eagle. The fire sticks send death from farther than your arrow can fly.”
“I am not afraid of the soldier tribe’s fire sticks.” Little Eagle stood his ground, bow in hand. He notched an arrow. The rolling thunder from just beyond the hill to the east of the camp grew louder.
“Come, Little Eagle!” shouted his mother. Grimacing, he turned to followed her.
The storm broke. Little Eagle looked over his shoulder. Strange men dressed in blue, astride horses, thundered down the hill behind them. “The soldiers!” rang out a panic-laced voice.
Little Eagle turned to face his enemy. He drew back his bowstring and loosed his arrow. It soared toward the soldiers but fell short of its mark and was trampled by the beating hooves.
Little Eagle stared as one of the soldiers lifted a long stick to his shoulder. He saw fire spurt from the end of the stick, felt a sudden burning in his chest, and crumpled to the ground.
As the thunder passed he whispered, “I do not want to leave Grass Valley, Mother.”