“The Everlasting Stream” follows Walt Harrington as he is reintroduced to hunting after decades of city living.
In “The Everlasting Stream,” Harrington describes his rural beginnings and reminisces about small game hunting trips with his father. During these early hunting trips, Walt learns the reality of killing and eating meat when his father tells him, “You shoot an animal and it bleeds.”
As a young boy Walt’s family moves to the suburbs, selling the house that his mother and father had built for a profit. They used the money to build a fine suburban home for themselves and their children, and in the process, left the country life behind.
Soon, Walt becomes a journalist, and a good one at that, quickly climbing from a local newspaper all the way to the Washington Post. Eventually he moves to the Washington Post Magazine where he spends months following and profiling notable figures like Jesse Jackson and the first President Bush. His wife is also on the Washington fast-track, working for an insurance company, and the two seem destined for a glamorous city existence.
A yearly trip to Harrington’s in-laws’ in Kentucky changes his view on life, family, and what it means to be a man. Harrington’s wife (and in-laws) are African-American and live a country existence, with rabbit hunting playing a prominent role.
Harrington meets a group of men who initially are acquaintances that he must spend time with to please his wife, but eventually become some of his best friends, even though he only sees them for a few days each year.
Along the way, Harrington begins to question whether his city existence is the best way to spend his time, what values he wants to pass down to his own son, and what it means to be a man in the modern world.
Through rabbit hunting with his father-in-law Alex and his friends Bobby, Lewis, and Carl, Walt discovers the everlasting stream and finds a peace of mind that he could never find in the city.
I recommend “The Everlasting Stream” to hunters and non-hunters, country and city dwellers, and anyone who has ever questioned the meaning of their existence. Harrington’s vivid descriptions of rabbits, guns, friendship, and family will leave you laughing one minute and crying the next.
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All images via Amazon/The Everlasting Stream