Early most mornings, past the big oak where the street bends, I see swallows — usually a pair, but sometimes one or the other is out alone. I say one or the other, but they move so quickly I can’t tell them apart, or even judge their relative size. It’s possible, too, they’re not the same swallows — just as I’m not the same person who sees them from day to day, and the oak is not the same oak, the street not the same street, and so on — as familiar as it all seems and blissfully strange, as I pass through it in the same instant it passes through me. Be it as it may — the birds dart high and then skim the roadway, almost touching it with their wings. They make sudden turns above rooftops and coast in the light as if the new day were flesh, and night a sweet veil falling away.
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