Posted by: mdmusingsie | December 12, 2013

Swan Moments

What are some of the first things you think of when someone mentions swans?  Beauty, grace, and elegance all come to mind for me.  Watching them glide through water with their wings arched, you can’t help but admire and possibly even envy them.

Yet to watch them going into and out of the water or wandering on land, it’s an entirely different story. I’ve seen them in St. Stephen’s Green, their legs quite disproportionate to their bodies as they heave themselves out of the water and move at something between a stutter and a waddle on the ground.  There’s a surprising awkwardness in their movements, as if they are doing so for the first time.


Flapping its wings to help lift it out of the water


Feeding time (though sadly it’s white bread)


Such thin pins to hold up the elongated body


The whiteness always begins under the wings

When they’ve had their preen and rest, they return to the incline at the water’s edge and stand on wobbly pins as they slowly lower their body to slip into the water and float effortlessly away.


The legs wobble as they begin the descent


The dichotomy of their movements in water versus land struck me as mirror to many human traits.  There are those who would not think twice about getting up in front of an audience to speak, act, or play music, whilst others tremble and stutter just at the thought.  Or those who can engineer a hundred story building or solve one of the mysteries of the universe, but quake at having to carry on a conversation with a stranger.

We all have moments when we are swans, both the awkward moments when we are out of our element, stumble and look or at least feel ill at ease, but also moments when we glide with grace and style. They key is to remember that people think of swans during their moments of elegance and beauty in water and not their unease on land. 

Make the most of your swan moments, the ones that are worth remembering and forgive yourself and others those uncomfortable and even embarrassing times.  We are all swans at heart.


Though born at the same time, some turn white faster than others


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