Letter to the Editor, June 17, 2020

“To A Scarce Father”


Just like Dad I’ll keep this to the point.

He gives me someone to look up to, something to chase and know I’ll never catch. That’s fine with me. He gives me a straight trail to follow, one that climbs mountains, skirts traplines and rivers, and gets things done.

So thank you, Dad, for the early mornings of scooping mud from the ditch and tamping fence posts and moving cows. I never did acclimate I guess because I still hate all of it. Thank you for being tough so that the rest of the world seemed easy. Thank you for speaking and not talking; thank you for raising me purposefully; thank you for teaching me how to respect a wife, how to buck up, how to be a squeaky tire, how to participate within nature with the hook, the gun, and the steel trap while also being humane, respectful, and appreciative.

Thank you for your action, but also for your inaction. Thank you for being silent sometimes, for letting me figure things out myself but being there when I fail. Thank you for showing me what integrity and character look like. Thank you for being the man and the father that’s scarce today.

I said I’d keep this to the point, didn’t I Pa? I didn’t even use a superfluously unabridged vocabulary word.

Happy Father’s Day, Dad. I love you.

Joe Jackson

Fairbanks, Alaska

(former Goshen County Resident)



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