My father was a man of many talents. He was a very hard worker, a great conversationalist, a good listener, and a wonderful storyteller. I was mesmerized by his stories of the past. He loved his home and family, working the land, and the music of Hank Williams.
Several months ago, I began thinking about Arthur Elliston. He was my grandfather's hired hand. I had not thought of him in years.
Mr. Arthur was around long before I was born--since Mother was a child, in fact--so he was like one of the family. Though he didn't have much to call his own, he was always in good spirits, constantly laughing, joking. And he was always kind to my siblings and me.
Since I couldn't get him off my mind (as often happens before I write a biographical piece), I scribbled down a few memories and shared them at our monthly literary meeting. But the memories kept coming. There was no way around it; I had to write Mr. Arthur's story.
I sent the story to The Cossack Review, a new literary journal in California, and "Fish Bones" was accepted. It will be published in a future issue.