I’m not sure I was scared of the dark
as a boy or if my aging mind tells me
I should have been because who isn’t.
I do know I was terrified of falling into
a snake pit like Mattie did in True Grit
(I’m thinking of the original, buoyed by
Glen’s smooth tenor, and Wayne’s eye).
As I think about it now that snake den
was dark, so I guess I was scared of the
dark or at least what it could hold in a
writhing ball at the bottom of its heart.
Sure, I loved Rooster and LaBoeuf, but
they were big and I was small. My hero
in the movie was Mattie, a child like me
thin and unsure but betting I had the grit.
Maybe that’s why my father made sure
I memorized that movie, to learn few
battles are won alone, and to see under his
watchful eye someone small like me in
light of the technicolor sun of true love.
My book club read — and loved — TRUE GRIT last year. These tributes to your dad are beautiful.
If you’ve never read the book, I highly recommend it. It is my favorite read of the past three years.
“Few battles are won alone” ⚔️ ?