‘Upon the Brimming Water Among The Stones, Are Nine-And-Fifty Swans….’

Some weeks ago,  I decided to venture out into the cold, and travel to my favourite place in all of Loughrea, where I feel most at peace; beside the Lake. I have done this many times. I have countless images of the lake, and ducks, also plenty of swans.

But, on this particular day, not one swan was in sight. I was anticipating wonderful imagery of these delightful, photogenic swans. Albeit, there was a fabulous sunset to distract me.

As I walked along the long winding stone wall, looking out to the still lake, my camera dangling from my neck, I heard a sudden sound. It disturbed the silence. A sudden movement in the water. I won’t lie, I got excited. The moment I peered out over the wall, I made eye contact with two beautiful cygnets, still growing, aging fantastically. My heart soared. I began to take plenty of pictures, talking to them in the meantime (No one was around, so I could be my crazy self, who talks to animals). As I began to stroll along the footpath, they decided to follow along. I melted like a snowman in the summer. Thankfully, there was not a soul in sight, as I continuously ‘awwed’ and told them how beautiful they were. I was like a proud Mother. The entirety of my journey back towards the exit, I was joined by these magnificent creatures. They didn’t leave my side. They had become my friends.

I love moments like these, where I get the opportunity to capture the beauty and kindness of animals. I felt as if they were guiding me home, making sure I would leave safely. Before I left, I actually thanked them, and bid them Goodbye. Yes, I know I probably sound like I have completely lost my mind, but I always feel the need to communicate with an animal, no matter what. They deserve to be acknowledged. They deserve to be talked to. If  I don’t, who else will?

Keep an eye out for any animal you encounter, they are precious. They are gifts to this world. We need to keep them safe.

-Alice

alicephotography24@gmail.com

‘Hope is the thing with feathers, that perches in the soul, and sings the tune without the words, and never stops at all.’

-Emily Dickinson

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