Later, when he told the story, he would say it happened so fast that it was like it never happened. But he rarely lingered on the details. The words still got caught in his throat, tangled up in the images he was trying to forget and hold all at once. And it often made everyone uncomfortable. Most of the time, he just said his son was gone and left it at that. Most of the time, no one asked any more questions. So it was easy enough to turn the questions back toward them and change the conversation.
He didn’t want to be the man who lost his son in the river. He wanted to catch fish and meet new people and find new rivers and eat good food. He wanted to be a man who continues, in spite of the noisy and mangled cans dragging behind him. Which is probably why he was drawn to spend more time with kids. They were eager to learn how to do things, took instruction easily from the funny man by the river, and they could care less where he came from or where he had been.
~ Megan M. Codera