Hunting Paradise


Print version


                        Although Hell can be portrayed as a vivid tangible landscape, in reality it's a mental backdrop. Loss of self respect and worth as well as a loss of purpose can plunge a person into his own hell on many levels. This tale explores the theme of loss and redemption by following two characters separated in time by four generations, each man dealing with a life crisis.  
            One story, set in the later half of the nineteenth century, follows a white orphan boy raised by people of mixed race. He has never reconciled his self hatred, nor his love-hate relationship with the land that formed him. Set in the current time, the parallel story begins as four friends go on a hunting trip together. An unexpected storm triggers an accident, and leaves the four men stranded. The two stories intertwine through the experiences of the contemporary character, John, and his direct ancestor, Paul.  

During the contemporary hunting group's search for a way out of the unfamiliar woods, they are attacked, apparently by a group of ragged men dressed in nineteenth century clothes. John is wounded.

As his friends try in vain to find civilization, John realizes that the increasingly strange events stem from a one hundred and fifty year old conflict that somehow centers around him. Whether he is hallucinating from injuries sustained in the original van wreck, or from injuries well over one hundred years old, he must resolve his ancestor's past conflicts to resolve his own.

*photos from the Library of Congress collection.

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