Tale #69: The Swift

The swift is an entirely airborne bird. It feeds on moths and bees. It does not nest, and sleeps as it flies. Its feet never touch the ground.

A swift is born in the sky. Unlike other birds, swifts give birth to live young, and as they fall the wind wakes them. They must take wing before they hit the sea or else they will drown.

Even in death the swift remains aloft. Its dead body floats upon the warming air. Around it clouds form, and it is as rain that it is returned to earth.



1. Written on July 23rd, 2018


I sat on the bench, watching the ducks sail serenely in pairs across the surface of the lake.

He put his hand on my thigh, and whispered something in my ear. I laughed. The sound of it seemed disconnected from the world. On the lake, one of the ducks was pulled beneath the water, as a hint of something large rising and falling from the depths was obscured by the splash and commotion. As he tried to kiss me, I stood up and ran and did not look back.

When I knocked on the door of my house ten minutes later, out of breath and close to tears, my mother answered, and, before I could cry, asked me where I had left my coat. I had to trudge back, red-faced, trepidatious. The bench was empty, the ducks had flown away. My jacket was draped over the side of a bin.

I wished I could not be seen.



1. Written on 15th August, 2019


They did not reveal to us our true nature until we were close to graduating from high school. An assembly was called, and a member of our class was brought on to the stage. As we watched, they peeled back the skin of their face, showing us the metallic structure beneath.

Knives were handed to each of us, so that we could confirm upon ourselves. We were thus sent out into the world, unsure of what it was, what it had been all this time.

I pulled the skin back down over the hydraulics in my wrist. The lacerations healed without scars. I never spoke of it again.

This was how it had always been done, how it always will be done.



1. Written on August 15th, 2019

Marvel’s First Gay Superhero

Last night I dreamt I was Marvel’s first gay superhero.

I was in the newest film, and I got to be friends with the green woman from guardians of the galaxy, and while she was talking to tony stark I got to say a single sassy quip.

(The joke unfortunately goes unremembered)

Then in the first action sequence of the film, I chastely kissed my boyfriend (an unnamed, nondescript pale man in white tshirt) goodbye on the forehead, before flying off in my spaceship, where the baddy (a 100 foot tall man with no hands) punched my spaceship straight into the sun.

And that was the end of Marvel’s first gay superhero.



1. Written on 14th August, 2019
2. Based upon a dream of the previous night
3. All historical inaccuracies are the fault of my sleeping brain