My Title of Liberty

     "In Memory of our God, our religion, and freedom, and our peace, our wives, and our children." - Alma 46:12    

Sam and the Sea

see Sam's World.

I did not know for almost three years where I got the original idea for my story, that being the image of Sam, waiting in the dark on a cliff over the sea, going over his memories, and waiting for the sunrise. As I began adding details to the story, and since a lot of it came so easily, I began wondering if it may have really happened. Was some form of inspiration giving me a true story from the past? I awoke one morning and it was suddenly clear. It was pretty straight-forward symbolism, like they say dreams are. A few years back, I lost my family, my job, and then my income. I had no prospects for the future, and all my hopes lay in the unseen world of the promised resurrection. All I owned were my memories. In my story, the name Sam means "memory".

The original short story:

Sam and the Sea

Sam sat motionless on the bluff staring toward the dawn's horizon. The surface of the sea below him seemed dark and brooding as the sky began to lighten. This was an annual ritual for him. His first wife Mira had died on this day, ten years ago. He had chosen to honor her memory and their love by observing the rising of the sun on the anniversary of her death, reminding himself that she too would rise again at the dawn of the new world. He seldom thought of her these days, except when some small thing reminded him of her, and, of course, on this day of remembrance, but he treasured the memories he had of her.

He had since remarried. His wife Shela and he had a young daughter, Kara, now five years old. They would still be asleep in their rough-hewn home only a mile away.

Now the sun appeared at the sea's furthest edge, at first, just a bright sliver. It was necessary to look away from it, but now he watched the effect on his surroundings. The low hills behind him and all the objects around him were overlaid with a reddish-gold, reminding him of the wonderful nature of the world to come. Nothing would ever again die or wither as it does now.

As the colors of the day turned normal, and the wind began to pick up, he rose, turned his back to the sea, and started down the path back toward home. As he did so, his heart was lightened by the hope his ritual had brought him. That hope was something that he shared with his little family.

In a few minutes, he came in sight of his house. There was smoke rising from the chimney, and the sounds of laughter coming from the open door. Before he got to the door, Kara had spotted him and came to meet him. When they met, he picked her up in his arms and hugged her. Then lifting her up to his shoulders, he carried her into the house.

Shela had already set the table with a bowl of corn bread covered with a cloth, a small pot of honey, and a plate of smoked fish. She sat down on the bench across the table from Sam and Kara to eat. She had learned to appreciate the ritual, even though it was his alone. It brought his renewed hope and strength to their lives. She knew his love for her and Kara would also last forever.

- David Sawyer, begun November 30, 2003

I think I had no idea that the preceding story would be anything more than what you have just read, a very short story. But with the encouragement of some friends, it has grown in my mind and I have gone seeking for it's missing parts. I now have three "books" started; the titles are tentative.
Here is an outline:

BOOK ONE: Sages for a New World

The eight members of a family outing are separated from everything they have known by a new sea that appeared overnight. How they cope with their new situation, found a new society, and set the stage for Sam's story.

Sam and Mira

BOOK TWO: Sam and the Sea

Sam and Mira grow up as childhood friends. Sam is trained by his mother to read and write and by his father to work with wood. At the age of twelve, Sam is given the responsibility of the written records of his community's Ancients. Sam and Mira share the responsibility, and marry at the age of sixteen. Shortly thereafter, Mira is killed when strangers from the Sea pillage their coast. Sam grieves, builds a new home at the top of the escarpment south of the village, and becomes a recluse. Mira's sister, Shela, deals with her grief by comforting members of her family. After she feels her family has recovered, she seeks out Sam in his grief and insists that he teach her to read, partly, at least, to help him. The two of them find restoration and comfort when they focus on each other. They marry, then scout for the village to find a safe refuge in case of another attack. They have a daughter Kara who brings them new joy.

BOOK THREE: Kara's Story

Kara at the age of five, migrates with her parents to a new home in the mountains when their village is again attacked from the sea.