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And Then Came August [A short Story of a Father and a Son]
And then came August
[A short Story of Growing up]
In 1981, when Christopher Wright was thirty-four years old, two years away from being sober, the Holy Spirit would come upon him and he would never drink again. However, at the beginning of this story he is still going through this sobering process, he is in a semi-conscious state. When you first witness him, he’s thinking, thinking about it, wandering, often thinking he can really do without drinking, a little angry and ashamed that he didn’t try, but his world is a fog, and he’s aware of it, and he’s tired of it. He is happy with most of the people he meets on the surface, but inside he is inertly angry, he feels dirty: this feeling, of course, varies, he sometimes considers himself an exceptional person; yet unsophisticated (which he is not), hard to adapt to his surroundings, and feels that he still has goals to fulfill, but death is better than living an unhealthy life: a life that goes back to the bar every night; in an unhealthy state all the time, it is difficult for him to be cheerful, pleasant most of the time; and he is attractive to women, always has been, especially right now. He thinks he can somehow achieve something great, but his options seem to diminish as time passes and his drinking increases. He sees heaven as the way home (if there really is a heaven, and whether drunkards go to heaven, he’s not sure, maybe it could be the unforgivable sin, but he feels it isn’t); yes, heaven would give him immortality and a safe distance from the bottle; and death is always around the corner, in the corner of his mind. But since he’s stubborn and still functioning well, he might have a chance if he can change, if only he could find the courage to face his alcoholism, where most of his demons come from.
Now Christopher Wright, better known as “Chick”, left his home at an early age, St. Paul, Minnesota and spent eleven years in the military. Now he’s back home from the war as a staff sergeant (Vietnam War). And in the years to come, five years to be exact, he collected about one million and three hundred thousand dollars for himself, from the real estate transition. He created some ill will among his family members, neighbors, and for a while he was known as the “Landlord King”.
This occupied his energy for a while, during which time he sobered up, yet he had a heart attack, a stroke, and a neurological illness, and then decided to devote the rest of his life to the honorable rejuvenation of world poetry; trying to be like all the great poets before him. He refined himself, without drink, mostly literature; body building, weekly walks in the area, medicines, patience, rest. He read hundreds of books, theories, concepts from his armchair, got rid of his hypothetical enemy, ignorance, became a scholar, with diplomas and all such fine things. A campaign that took him around the world several times over the next fifteen years, during which he proved himself endlessly, the equal of any living scientist. The year in which this story opens makes him tiresome, he has become half-hearted; his thoughts revolve largely around his past war experiences, his illness, his wife and children who have left him.
Early in his life, Mr. Wright married a woman several years his junior, who brought him into the circles he now so admires (he married in 1972, after he returned home from the Vietnam War, and had a child), and he enjoys , the faultless dish of a scholar.
His ex-wife bore him a son and, after the magnificence of this performance, left him because of his threatening illnesses. The boy, Cody G. Wright, became a great soldier in his own right, in the United States Army, a captain and proficient in all military duties, a good example to others.
Cody wrote his memoir titled: “And Then August Came” about the war he was in, the war in Bosnia . Upon word of its creation, this work was quickly auctioned among publishers, it did receive a private press, but only one, it was not strong enough for the public to demand a second printing.
Young Cody had one picture of his father, he was on a teeter totter and his father was behind him, they were in the park together. It was such a common picture that he kept in his home, now in Columbus, Ohio, that it was as if it were part of the furniture. It showed the background of the park in the 1970s. He had long light brown locks, dressed in a jean jacket, in the city of Dieburg, West Germany, where he was stationed for a short time. This was Cody at four years old.
His memories of Dieburg, however thin, were unformulated and pleasant. He was so very young, but he remembered guests coming to the apartment, meeting his father in the guest house with him, how he followed him, his friends holding him up in the air in bars, his father showing him around, his father which is breathless on the edge in case someone dropped it; he would occasionally whisper to his wife and friends to be more careful with him, and he would sing his songs on the guitar and in the strange dialect of the Germans. He remembered some of these things, and his father told him about these things, and then he thought that they were part of his memory.
It was years later, after Cody had grown up, when he was ready to join the army himself, he moved in with his father, only his father. He was constantly going out at night, on his drinking trips. It wasn’t like the trip he once took with his father, fishing to Gull Lake, and there in the cabin by the lake he and his father spent half the night swatting mosquitoes, laughing the other half, and breaking into the empty cabin next door so they could sleep well; went fishing in the morning. Nor was it like the picnics he took him to. His father was in despair at this obscure miserable life that his son had taken: the path he had once walked.
So for Cody, life was a struggle against youth, and he waited for a decision, and he made one, and the army made one: within six months, impressive months, he left his father’s house and faded into the invisible life of the army. It was August 1991, he was nineteen years old. For him, it was a concession to his boring life, an adjustment to his hyperactivity, lack of money and perhaps refinancing his night life, bodybuilding. In a letter to his father, he said: “It has nothing to do with us, as for me going into the army, it is time for me to think about a life of adventure, so please don’t take it the other way.” So he didn’t want to hurt his father, but he was almost exhausted in his bland life. His father understood, it gave a patient frown, interrupted his play, swallowed up his months, when he went to the army, and tirelessly gave him various glows; he was sure he would do the same for Cody.
As a young man before his teenage years, he lived almost completely inside himself, he seemed an inarticulate boy, always thinking, rarely socializing with anyone, one could say that the boy is completely American. Polite, full of spirit and one who loves animals, nature. Shy and sensitive as youth,
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