The Scream

Once when we were still living in Canada, my dad and I were hunting along the old channel of the Saskatchewan River. It had overflowed its banks decades earlier leaving this placid winding thoroughfare through the dense bush.

At night, we’d beach our canoe on the bank, fix dinner and fall asleep under a canopy of stars. In the dark hours, the entire land was enveloped in a blanket of stillness. One night, we were laying in our bags on the soft sand. I found myself unable to sleep right away but I could tell from dad’s breathing that he was out.

I lay there enjoying the quiet for a while. But then a thought came into my mind. And once there, it refused to leave. The harder I tried to dismiss it the more forcefully it came back. And the more I contemplated said thought, the funnier it became. 

Soon it was inevitable. I knew what was coming. I was going to scream.And dad? Dad was going to shit himself.

And so, sides already hurting from trying to stifle my laughter, I took an enormous breath and let out the most bloodcurdling scream I could muster.

Until that moment I thought teleportation was a fantasy. But I swear to God, that man passed through his sleeping bag and called his .30-30 to him like Luke Skywalker’s lightsaber. He was crouched over me, pointing the gun in every direction trying to pinpoint the danger.

 And me? I was curled in the fetal position unable to breathe, tears streaming down my cheeks.

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