Amphibious Operations

I was out with a buddy in a johnboat during a Mississippi Delta flood. We were either too young for live firearms or couldn’t afford the ammo. Our defensive weaponry this day was a recurve bow and a couple of cedar arrows tipped with broadheads. I was in the front of the boat.

The current got the better of us, and we slammed nose-first into thick brush. I rolled backwards, fully enveloped in limbs, leaves, spider webs and bugs. When the boat came to a stop I was also nose-to-nose with a simply gigantic water moccasin.

I shouted for my buddy to extricate us, but nothing happened. Afraid to take my eyes off the snake hovering maybe 6" away from my eyeball, I noticed the tip of a broadhead appear next to my right ear. Before I could speak the world exploded in a maelstrom of muddy water and goop. The snake was gone.

I disentangled my end of the boat from the snake’s lair while vigorously expressing my displeasure with my buddy’s risky solution to my problem. Now he wanted his arrow back, the fletching of which was sticking out of the water and quivering.

He gingerly lifted the arrow to find it had pinned the snake to the creekbed. The missile had passed into its open mouth and through its lower jaw. The snake had been mere milliseconds away from biting me in the face. We beat the thing to death with a log and called it a day.