RANDOM ACT OF METAPHOR The Serenity of a Sailing Swan
Hmmm, should I pay closer attention to the ubiquitous Mute Swan as I scan the lakes and marshes for more species for my day list?
Mute Swans are a ho-hum bird for serious birdwatchers. We can fairly be accused of discriminating against them. The only time we focus our binoculars on them is when they are off in the distance and we think they might be the less common and more coveted Tundra Swan or Trumpeter Swan. But it may just be that they deserve a second look.
I was out birding today at Rattray Marsh. It was a chilly, gray and lacklustre mid April afternoon so I was staying mostly in the sheltered areas out of the wind. I ventured briefly onto the shoreline of Lake Ontario to get a look at the other side of the marsh.
The water was choppy with sizable swells rolling up onto the flat, polished stones of the shingle barrier beach. Nothing to see, I thought, on the lake on such a blustery day. But a hundred feet off shore I noticed a Mute Swan.
Silly swan, I thought. Why be out there battling the waves when it could be leisurely hanging out on the calm, sheltered waters of the marsh? I took a quick look at it through my binoculars. A different point of view presented itself.
The swan was calmly riding the crests and valleys of the wave like a tiny sailboat. In the midst of the inhospitable waves, it was a picture of serenity. I couldn’t help but admire its composure.
It occurred to me that there was a lesson to be learned. In turbulent times, we fear the choppy waters of life and expend a lot of energy battling the waves. Getting to safety of the shore is all we can think about.
But often, it is not so much the storm around us but rather the storm within that we are really fighting against. If we could calm our troubled heart and adjust ourselves to the rhythm of the waves, we might find that the going becomes less difficult.
The serenity of a sailing swan – a random act of metaphor to remind me that all storms pass in time and getting through them is more about serene acceptance and trust than wilful resistance.
~ Michael Robert Dyet is the author of “Until the Deep Water Stills – An Internet-enhanced Novel” – double winner in the Reader Views Literary Awards 2009. Visit Michael’s website at www.mdyetmetaphor.com or the novel online companion at www.mdyetmetaphor.com/blog. ~ Follow Michael’s Metaphors of Life Journal aka Things That Make Me Go Hmmm regularly at this site. Categories: Shifting Winds, Sudden Light, Deep Dive, Songs of Nature, Random Acts of Metaphor. Originating at www.mdyetmetaphor.com/blog2. Or subscribe to my Twitter site (mdyetmetaphor) to receive tweets when blog postings go up.
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