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Splendid Visions

Splendid Visions
At some point between my sixth and seventh birthdays, the Greek god Pan started haunting our backyard. He dwelled behind the pear tree next to the garage and left his hoof prints in the dirt, his half-eaten pears in a shrub. I once spotted his horned silhouette near the ivy-strangled fence. With a fashioned spear I hunted him up and down the block, through neighbors’ yards, and into the woods by the river, my imagination animated, stirred by sylvan possibility. I’ve never forgotten that feeling, never been able to forget.

An ecstatic and engaged individuality defined my childhood in suburban New Jersey. While my single father labored ten-hour days, my pals and I biked all across town, cussing and spitting, each of us a veritable Tom Sawyer or Huck Finn. We concocted waterproof forts by the river and then prayed for rain, raked mountainous piles of leaves to grapple in, buried Star Wars figures in narrow graves in a field, donned camouflage and faded into the woods with BB guns and bows and arrows. (My father’s handing over of a Crosman BB gun and compound hunting bow to an eight-year-old boy remains a curiosity I can’t fully explain. That nobody ended up disabled or deceased is a mystery fit for Newton. Even after my little brother shot our babysitter in the face—the BB got lodged in the bone of her chin and had to be surgically excised—I was still allowed to make merry with the gun.) For most of…
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1 Comment

  1. You really provided great information to us. This is really helpful. Thanks for sharing.

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