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SWAN-SCATTER

Dreamed 1998/10/9 by Chris Wayan

A lagoon with pebbly shores, humping occasionally into outcrops where birds nest--mostly gulls and small divers but a few huge white ones: pelicans, geese, swans? I start walking round the bay, but decide to try flying, though it's been difficult lately. But I go through the motions, flapping in imitation of the big birds, and I feel my arms cup the air. I can do it. There's no long clear stretch of beach for a runway, so I risk running straight down to the water. Yes!

I skim the surface, working hard but slowly rising, till I can see the whole lagoon. It's a clear day and I glide a bit, enjoying the view. Keep on circling the bay, skimming just a few yards up: practice. Big white birds flying over trees and gold water, seen from far above.

At last I feel confident enough to sail right up the face of a big wave, skimming the glassy face. The far side is a spectacular drop, steep and long, with a fierce downdraft. Though I'm scared, I skim down the wave-face like a surfer...

Skirt the land on the far side now. I pass over a few swan-nests. The owners scatter, shrieking! I worry a bit that they won't come back in time, that their eggs will get cold. But I'm not buzzing them, or trying to steal their eggs; I'm just a strange new flying creature they're overreacting to.

They'll just have to get used to me; I have as much right to fly here as they do.

NEXT MORNING



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