Stars flutter on the surface of the
. The moon wobbles, and bright, widening zeroes riffle as you wade in. With blood warmth, the water receives you. Ghost River
You will swim to the far shore. You can see the Sunstone from here, glowing softly under the nape of night. You push off with a confident breaststroke that fixes in your gaze that luminous mote upon the far shore.
Ahead, slick water reflects the silence of space and a splatter of stars. They rise and fall with the ripples of your swim.
The way that dewdrops light up like diamonds, the starry reflections on the slick and moving water harden. They gleam with the glint of dark hooves, shimmer like glossy fur, streak a tail, a flaring mane, and spark the brave intelligence of a horse’s eye.
Within the soft gel of that stare, awareness peers from alternate worlds. “What are you doing out here, swimmer?” The vanishing horizon within the eye pulls closer with curiosity. “You are not nearly strong enough to mount me. Why are you swimming in the
?” Ghost River
“To get to the other side.”
“Turn back! You will drown. There’s an undertow ahead.”
“Who are you?”
“I am Sky Pony. Strong Dreamers swim out here to mount me and ride the glittering path of the Milky Way to the Beyond. But you are not strong enough to catch me. You will drown.”
You tread water. “Sky Pony, carry me to the far shore! I’m getting the Sunstone! To free the animal souls!”
On the ruffling water, the Sky Pony gallops. “I can’t help you, dim swimmer. You haven’t the strength to catch me. Let alone hang on even to reach the near shore. Keep calm. Swim back. And get a boat.”
for Part V of
Swimming in the Ghost River
by A. A. Attanasio