The inhabitants of the deep marshes

In between decisions,  some well done, others maybe not… that’s how he lived his life

El vuelo Ciénega Juan Criollo, Magdalena, Colombia
Flight           Juan Criollo  Marsh, Magdalena, Colombia

As he dreamed, he relived that night when his mother talked to him about the black birds and destinies.

“Look son, we all reach times in life in which we have to take a decision, some are important, some just aren´t. Now, these black birds, they live deep in the marshes, and they are bad news, for they are waiting for someone to reach that point in which he has to decide. We’re talking important stuff, that will not only affect him, but others in his life, also. That´s when they send confusion into the mind of that person, to ensure he makes the wrong choice.”

“But, how can they do that, and why?”, he excitedly exclaimed, for in his mind, he pictured a few times he had overslept, deciding to snooze awhile, instead of getting up to help with the chores. Also, he thought about the afternoons he spent with Camila, hanging out and going for a walk after school, instead of going straight home to do his share of the work back at the farm…

Levantando el vuelo Ciénega Juan Criollo, Magdalena, Colombia
Lifting off          Juan Criollo Marsh, Magdalena, Colombia

“That’s because they are part of the dark side of life, son. The part of life and ourselves, that tends towards being negative.”

“That’s unfair! Imagine Ma’am, I could easily make a mistake and do the wrong thing, all because of these meddling birds.”

“Could be, they lift their wings in flight to gather strength and send dark thoughts. When someone unfortunately does the wrong thing, the decision is trapped in a tiny snail shell. They catch them with their yellow beaks and spit out the shells. These can be found littering the swampy banks of the marshes among the reeds.”

Por la tarde Ciénega Juan Criollo, Magdalena, Colombia
The tree of the wrong decisions             Juan Criollo Marsh, Magdalena, Colombia

“Those black birds thrive upon the errors of mankind. During the night the flock back to their favourite tree, ever attentive to somebody else’s mistakes. But anyhow, don´t you worry. In the end, everything balances out.”

Por la tarde Ciénega Juan Criollo, Magdalena, Colombia
Afternoon in the marsh            Juan Criollo Marsh, Magdalena, Colombia

“In those same marshes, the illumination, white birds are found. Well, these are really beautiful and elegant. They have these long, slender necks and long legs, you see? When a difficult and utterly important situation arises, then they send these calm waves of thought to the person involved. In that manner, that person can make the right decision in a proper state of mind. That helps the person to make the right choice for all affected by the decision.”

The tired old traveller never forgot that story. Now, so many years later, his face lit up as he evoked those moments of long ago, savouring each instant of his past life.


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