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Sophie the Thanksgiving Duck

Short story By: Susan Hartline Fouts
Flash fiction



This is a short story I wrote on November 14, 2007. We were going through a very hard time financially and I had a choice, whether to cry or pick up the pen and write, so I picked up a pen and wrote this story.


Submitted:May 4, 2008    Reads: 182    Comments: 2    Likes: 2   



November 14, 2007

Sophie the Thanksgiving Duck written by Susan Fouts


Sophie was as fine a duck that you would ever hope to meet. She stood tall and proud as she crossed the round about.

Unaware of any danger she strutted along, quacking as she waddled. The lake looked inviting as the autumn sun shown bright
sparkles against the background of the sky. This was one difficult season for many people. Unemployment was on the rise. Food
banks were low on food and many people wondered how they would provide for their families this Thanksgiving.

Live simply: Eat simply should have been the motto for the day but extravagance would always win out in the end. The greed of stuffing their bellies to bursting was something that was expected every year.

Sophie paid no attention to the the fisherman gathering planks of wood from garbage piles laid neatly out for the bulk trashman to remove from the neatly manicured curb sites. The fisherman looked at each piece of wood with care, inspecting each for some flaw that would not be appropriate for the wonderful pen he was planning to build. He smiled with delight as he thought to himself, "All I need is enough to prepare a decent pen for my lovely duck and feed her the scraps from my table and I will have a luscious bird for Thanksgiving and my family will be fed and we will feast to our hearts delight.

The pounding of the nails only meant a closer certain death for poor Sophie, the finest duck you would ever want to meet.

The man was almost finished with the duck coop and as he put on the last plank and nailed it fast, he instucted his son to lure the bird to the house when no one was watching.

Sophie was a lonely duck. Her little ducklings had all grown and left the nest. She was always seen by herself. People came to recognize her as the tall, proud yet lonely duck.

The fisherman fished the lake for bass and brim. His son caught many fish to feed the family. One evening when the ducks swam to the shore to take their evening scraps of bread and brim, the fisherman's son spotted Sophie, the finest duck you would ever hope to meet. He lured her with fresh bread and she followed happily for the chance to receive free food. Slowly, slowly the sun went down in the west and Sophie made her way to the fisherman's house. She gave no struggle as he placed her gently in the pen. "Ahhh, my lovely duckling. You shall make a fine Thanksgiving dinner for our family this year."

How sad I felt as I daily served her her morning scraps. She would quack excitedly as I brought her her morning grub. Each day passed and each day brought her closer to the dining room table. Poor Sophie, the proud, tall, lonely duck whose life would be cut short for the Thanksgiving meal that would only last for one day. One day of the year and her life would flash before her sad eyes. For a piece of flesh the children of Israel murmured against the Lord till He brought a flock of quails and their souls lusted after the quails and the flesh was consumed between their teeth uncooked angering the Lord.

The fisherman instructed his wife that she was to cook the duck and make some good gravy and biscuits to go with it. "You've got to make at least eight pumpkin pies with two gallons of Cool Whip to go on top. You've got to make a giant pot of mashed potatoes and the biggest dish of green bean casserole with french fried onions on it. You can start cooking on Wednesday and get the majority of the pies out of the way so that the oven can be used for the duck.

I thought to myself, he'll kill me if I let the duck go so I'm going to pray for a miracle. Isn't it against the law to catch a duck and eat it? Anyway I decided to pray that somehow, some way God would free Sophie, the finest duck you would ever want to eat...I mean meet. We started a prayer chain. People from all over the country who had learned of Sophie's dilemna started praying for her release. As the days inched closer, there was an electricity in the air. Something was up which you just couldn't put your finger on.

Wednesday morning came and as I went to give her her morning scraps of food, I noticed that the latch was not secured. As I opened the pen, Sophie was gone. She was gone. I mean she escaped. I was rejoicing inside. I didn't let her go, but I am sure the fisherman would probably blame me. I was thanking God for saving the sweet little duck. The fisherman was a little angry that the duck got away, but he soon got over it, especially when he loaded up on mashed potatoes, green bean casserole and pumpkin pie. At one point he eyed my two little parakeets but figured that there would not be enough meat on them to satisfy his craving for fresh bird.

This year at this time I hope that your Thanksgiving holiday will be a truly blessed one. Remember to be thankful for your friends and families,even if you do not have much food to eat as many people will not this season. Many are struggling with their electricity turned off and some don't have water. Many don't have jobs, but remember that God loves you and Jesus loves you and that even in your struggles he cares for you and let us truly thank the Lord for the air that we have to breathe and his supply of all our needs. Amen.





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