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Polar Bear

A father died heroically in some Alaskan park
while trying to save his kids from a polar bear.


Long ago, when his mother gave birth 
one afternoon in Barstow, California,
could anyone have prophesied,
as in an old myth, that the baby crying
at her breast would one day be killed 
and partially eaten by a polar bear?


Has anyone from Barstow, California, been killed
and partially eaten by a polar bear? Yet her son
was. He looked up from making camp,
pitching the tent or lighting his Coleman stove,
and there it was, white and immense. His fate.

And he died heroically and was partially eaten. 

Of course, the bear had to be killed. The rangers 
shot it, which makes sense. You can’t have polar bears
running around in the wilderness! 
The wilderness is a place for dads and kids
and Coleman stoves. Polar bears just…
they just kind of ruin the whole thing.
As for the bear, it didn’t die heroically. 
It just got shot and fell over
and was sent to a lab for testing.

—from Central Air, available on Amazon

Polar Bear

“Fate is a weird thing. A Barstow dad and an Alaskan polar bear collide, kind of like the Titanic and the iceberg. I read this story in the newspaper and had to write about it.”

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