Nathan Deeter received an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Alaska-Anchorage in 1999 and has been teaching English Composition at the same university since 2002. He also works as the Training Specialist for the Arc of Anchorage. His favorite poets are Stephen Dunn and Rumi. He travels by the light of those he loves and no light is brighter than the one coming from his wife, April. She makes him write things like that all the time, but he doesn’t mind—it’s in the job description of being a husband. He has a bionic pancreas and a spoiled dog named Daisy.
The first thing I remember when I pick up my old rifle was its kick.
And then I remember its smell, a mixture of my father’s gun oil and the gun powder used in the bullets and the old leather from the sling. Even though there shouldn’t be a distinction, there is. My gun smells different than other rifles.
When I was six years old, I fell into a coma.
I was out for about two weeks, but when I awoke I discovered several things:
1. A packet of letters and flowers from my kindergarten classmates wishing me to get well.
2. A room full of strange doctors.
3. My memories had disappeared.
4. My voice had disappeared.