Tuesday, January 04, 2005

A Boy's Life

There are strange things done in the midnight sun
by the men who moil for gold,
The Arctic trails have their secret tales
that would make your blood run cold.
The Northern Lights have seen queer sights,
but the queerest they ever did see
was the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge
I cremated Sam McGee.

Few words can hearken me back to memories of my boyhood faster than those. It was one of my father's favorite poems, and it became one of mine as he would read it to me frequently (at my request).

Last night I read it again, along with others by service, as I took my bath. I had just returned home from a birthing class with The Feared Redhead, and so was in a mood to reflect on matters related to progeny, childhood, and heritage. With that in mind, I have decided to compile a list here of stories and authors that remind me of boyhood. And I do mean boyhood, not just childhood. I grew up a boy, and engaged in activities most usually associated with the male child. That's not to say girls CAN'T do them, but that they usually aren't INTERESTED in those activities. And, for the sake of safety and parental sanity, that's probably a good thing.

Some of these stories ARE universal, and any girl who takes an interest in ANY of them is welcome to them, but for me, when I remember being a boy, these are ther things I remember reading:

Rudyard Kipling
(Riki Tiki Tavi)
The Ransom of Red Chief
Louis L'Amour
Robert Service
(The Cremation of Sam McGee)
(The Quitter)
(The Odyssey -- I didn't read the Illiad till later in life)
C.S. Lewis
(The Chronicles of Narnia)
JRR Tolkien
(The Hobbit)
Jason and the Argonauts


I very much welcome comments by others as to their choices for such a list. Carin actually mentioned one that I agree with, and should have added:
Jules Verne

Others that spring to mind as the day goes by are:
Ray Bradbury
Robert Heinlein
Isaac Asimov

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