A cloud in the sky suddenly lighted as if turned on by a switch; its reflection suddenly materialized on the water upstream, flat and floating, so that I couldn’t see the creek bottom, or life in the water under the cloud. Downstream, away from the cloud on the water, water turtles smooth as beans were gliding down with the current in the series of easy, weightless push-offs, as men bound on the moon. I didn’t know whether to trace the progress of one turtle I was sure of, risking sticking my face in one of the bridge’s spider webs made invisible by the gathering dark, or to take a chance on seeing a carp, or scan the mudbank in hope of seeing a muskrat, or follow the last of the swallows who caught at my heart and trailed it after them like streamers as they appeared from directly below, under the log, flying up-stream with their tails forked, so fast.-- Annie Dillard (1974)
16 December 2009
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Annie Dillard. Extraordinary observation. And while men bound on the moon. Extraordinary.
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