“My grandmother was born in 1908 in Devine. She told me this story about when she was little.

Back in those days, there wasn’t a lot of money and most of the essentials they would reap from the land. Hunting game small game and fishing. One day her mother told her to go and get some firewood and to see if she could scrounge up any rabbits. She had a small scattergun and a pocket knife.

She would always go to the right of the large oak but this time she went to the left. She knew the area well enough and traveled about a half a mile where the thicket picked up. If she headed south she would come across the creek and would follow it until she came to the road. There had been a previous rain and the banks were still damp. She opted to go north towards the neighbor’s land then follow the fence line back home.

Failing to come across any game she was getting close to the fence. Then she heard the call of a Tom, close by. It garbled again in its distinct call. It was beyond the fence. Just south of the creek. She never really ventured that far but she decided to for the sake of the turkey. Mom would be so happy.

After crossing the creek she made her way up the embankment and heard the call again to her right. She walked a bit and suddenly fell into a ditch or depression in the land. Apparently from the rain. There were fallen branches that had washed up against it.

The ground was soft but not muddy. As she started to make her way out of the ditch, she heard the Tom behind her. Maybe 50 feet behind her. She was in awe, in shock. The turkey was wearing shoes. It was the strangest thing.

She walked towards it but not to close she raised her shotgun preparing to shoot the turkey. As she did she saw something even stranger. The turkey seemed to be tethered to something. Like a string, no strings. She took a step back and cocked the hammer. Then the turkey fell down. It was trying to escape. Something had it tethered.

She backed out of the chasm and circled the top. She was just a child, 10 maybe Summer 1918, and she slowly started backing away. As she did a figure dressed in black came forward as if from the dirt itself and motioned to her. He was taller than any man and gaunt but what she remembered was the smile. A dark and sharp smile. He motioned again.

She turned ran and ran. following the creek to the  street. Then onward home.
When she reached the house she was hysterical, she told her mother what had happened and that she had dropped the shotgun somewhere along the creek. It was still early in the day. When her father came home they recounted the story. He was not amused. He went back to the creek, her two brothers in tow and forced her to retrace her steps.

They found the shotgun. About 20 feet from that chasm. No man in black no turkey. What they did find was something had come out of the mud, turkey feathers, a pair of small shoes. And two footprints that seemed to lead back into the mud…” -Blue

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