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Shored Up

On the Eastern side of the wood, with the sun just gone down over the hill. The rock is wet and cold and slippy, a bare line of slate ninety degrees to the shore, and well away from the path. I know it because I was here before, and skidded across its surface many times, usually in the May, usually crouched low with a wooden box in the afternoon, with waves breaking mayflies onto the rocks and my young fingers hauling them away and up and into the box with a snap.

Now, I still have the time to wander the shore but I am no longer made for it. I could try and recreate but that time is punctured, vanished, disappeared. Instead I hear the same sound of water and wind, and see the same islands in the same lake, but stand taller and with different streams running through my head.

And the feelings of shoulds and oughts follow each other in their bitter chase, winding up the spring that will dampen all forward force. Entropy. Friction. The birth of information and the the great misleading. Atoms and quarks and strings and whatever else can fit in the bucket. And then rising with the green wings between your fingers, wet and cool and fresh, with a full two days to live and breed, and the odd time I let one go and marvel in that power.

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