Heron

I was smoking a cigarette on a bench, watching two swans glide up the river with their new family struggling to follow in their slipstream, when a large heron landed not more than three feet away from me.

I saw it from the corner of my eye but didn't turn my head to look at it directly as I didn't want to scare it, so I continued to watch the swans as they effortlessly muddied the water on their way to swan suburbia.

Five minutes at least had passed before it dawned on me that the heron was doing exactly the same thing as I was. 

Maybe we were even thinking the same thing. 

Maybe I should offer the heron a cigarette.

I wondered how it is that some are capable of settling down and raising a family while others are pulled to wander the earth in search of... well that's the point. We don't know what we're searching for until we find it, do we.

Then the rules immediately change and the game resets itself again.

I turned to look at the heron and he had the same idea. Our eyes met and the eternal question was answered in a heartbeat.

We sat together for a little while longer and fished for some more questions in the water to ask each other the next time our paths crossed.

Sion Smith