Restart Story

"Nonsense," you say toward the door.\n"Such noise! It is only the floor.\n\n"Tapping boards must such sounds all be,\nWinter's trying to get them free."\n\nAgain repeats the beats on wood,\nmaking rhythms no season could.\n\n[[Answer the door.]]
Such strange you have never seen,\nhis smile: it did seem to glean!\n\nKindness there too you saw.\nIt was his face, maybe his jaw.\n\nTurning the knob opens door to black.\nNo man is here, so you turn back.\n\n[[Close and lock door.]]
"Come in! Come in!" is what you say.\nYour response pleasant and quite gay.\n\n"Sit by the fire. Get yourself warm.\nIt's very cold this Christmas morn."\n\nThe man, he nods, moves to the flame.\nWith silence he walks to that aim.\n\n[[Ask his name.]]\n[[Remain silent.]]
A man stands out within the cold,\nwearing all red, he looks quite old.\n\nHis face covered throughout with hair,\nfunny in ways that make you stare.\n\nFather he's not is what you decide,\nGuest though he is with time to bide.\n\n[[Invite him into the house.]]\n[[Close the door.]]
Back to window there you sit down.\nEyes closed, with thoughts you begin to frown.\n\nHe wrote "morning if all was clear,"\nIn his letter he sent last year.\n\nYour own children siblings became,\n"Mother" they say; that's now your name.\n\nIt's all the war you know is cause.\nIt keeps Father gone and gives you pause.\n\nSnow falls as you watch it once more.\nWhile others sleep on in back and snore.\n\nAgain you wait, spending the night,\nSighing, knowing this is your plight.
"Many things I carry," says he to start.\n"Good presents, pretty gifts, and even some art.\n\nTo others I come to spread much joy.\nFor you, I come bringing not toy.\n\nInstead, words of a Father away,\nwishing he could be here this day."\n\n[[Let him finish.]]
If it's quiet that is his game,\nyou can wait too to learn his name.\n\nAfter warmth comes to his hands,\nhe bends his knees, loosens his bands.\n\nA sack he's had unseen in front.\nOpening it wide, from him comes grunt.\n\n[[Wait for him.]]\n
"In lands not that too far from here,\nhe sent letters to you this year.\n\nIt takes me time to get them all,\nbut here I am with a great haul.\n\nBefore the past, let's deal with pain.\nI have some truth to say very plain.\n\n[[Wait...]]
"Your Father is dead: this is the truth.\nSuch facts I would but spare the youth.\n\nLet them dream of Christmas tonight,\nshining bright days full of delight.\n\nThis bag I hold contains their smiles,\n'morrow will come with its own trials."\n\n[[...hope]]
"Will he come home to us real soon?"\nYou ask looking into the gloom.\n\nThere was not light upon the fields,\nno father yet to share the meals.\n\nBut on you wait and sit quite still,\nwatching for signs, testing your will.\n\nSuddenly knocks come from the door,\nthree sounds you hear and then no more.\n\n[[Answer the door.]]\n[[Continue to wait.]]
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Dan Cox
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Winter Road: \n A Tale of Cold and Comfort
"Have you a name?" you try to ask,\nafraid to know about his task.\n\nNo motion he makes to hear you speak,\nonly noise is but the wall's creak.\n\nSilent watching the fire you two\nsaying no words, watching the view.\n\n[[Remain silent.]]
"Here are letters, simple wrapped toys,\ngive them out to the girl and boys.\n\nBack out into the cold I go,\noff to brave the raining and snow."\n\nShutting the door on his way out,\nfrom the window, you watch his route.\n\nAcross the fields he goes with light,\nleaving you once again with night.\n\nDarkness there is, that is true,\nbut hope, from truth, you plan anew.\n\nSmall cry distracts that dark thinking,\nseeing the children standing, blinking.\n\n"He's not here yet," you lie,\nfearing such truths would make them cry.\n\n"Father's coming. Sleep now all you."\nTucking them back, knowing you knew.\n\nBack to window, again to wait,\nthis time with the truth of his fate.\n