My theme for the A to Z Challenge is Laura Ingalls Wilder. Laura Ingalls Wilder was the author of the Little House books and there was a television series very loosely based on the books. I began reading the books when I was eleven years old (which even I have a hard time believing is over 40 years ago!). If you would like to read about my feelings about Laura, visit this site. I have also listed helpful sites and blogs in my sidebar if you would like to learn more.
J is for Jack.
Honestly, it was not my intention to post passages from the Little House books nearly every day. But it seems that this is the way it’s going. I let things go awry and hopefully I’ll get back on track. My last couple of posts are kind of lame…
Could I have found something more interesting than Jack for J-day? I could not. It seems dogs were always a part of Laura and Almanzo’s life. And, in the books anyhow, it all started with Jack.
Jack didn’t die the way Laura wrote about it. He had already left the family.
That does not stop me from crying. Every single time I read the following passage:
They buried it on the low slope above the wheat field, by the path he used to run down so gaily when he was going with Laura to bring in the cows. Pa spaded the earth over the box and made the mound smooth. Grass would grow there after they had all gone away to the west. Jack would never again sniff the morning air and go springing over the short grass with his ears up and his mouth laughing. He would never nudge his nose under Laura’s hand again to say he wanted her to pet him. There had been so many times that she might have petted him without being asked, and hadn’t.
“Don’t cry, Laura,” Pa said. “He has gone to the Happy Hunting Grounds.”
“Truly, Pa?” Laura managed to ask.
“Good dogs have their reward, Laura,” Pa told her.
Perhaps, in the Happy Hunting Grounds, Jack was running gaily in the wind over some high prairie, as he used to run on the beautiful wild prairies of Indian Territory. Perhaps at last he was catching a jack rabbit. He had tried so often to catch one of those long-eared, long-legged rabbits and never could.
–By The Shores of Silver Lake, Chapter 2: Grown Up
by Laura Ingalls Wilder
**Join me and many other Laura fans at LauraPalooza 2012 (the
second-ever Laura Ingalls Wilder Conference), which will be held July
12-14, 2012, in Mankato, Minnesota. For more information visit Beyond Little House and look for the heading “LauraPalooza 2012”. The pull down menu will have all of the information that you are looking for!**