He sat on his ice mountain

Illustration by Sandra Diekmann

He sat on his ice mountain and surveyed all within his view and he knew, he knew, there were far off places with strange flowers and different stars. There were breezes whose acquaintance he had yet to make and waters deep with secrets in hidden forest pools. There was moonlight that fell in showers, like rain, instead of curling down in ribbons of silver. There was a selfish sun that would trade one small spark of fire for every whisker he owned and his tail too! He surveyed all he knew for one more long luxurious moment before unfurling the wings — of his imagination — and leaping into the air. — Annette Marie Smith

Of Winged Things

No harpyia, no thornbird, no phoenix no, no raptor of the glassy eye for me. When the mage offered me wings and said I must choose a bird for him to base them on, I thought of hummingbirds and nightingales, golden pheasants and birds of paradise, desiring the jeweled color, the nectared voice, the fanning sweep of feathered edge falling like night, like lashes, like spinning leaves — all kaleidoscopically.

My thoughts flew lofty and I thought of angels with the snow of mountains on their backs. Could I convince the mage they could reasonably be considered to be a type of bird? And as is the case with me, when I think of up I also think of down. And so I lusted after a fallen angel’s wings pointed at the tops like arrows and fletched with fire but silky to the touch and leaving marks upon one’s fingers — soot say some, INK says me.

The mage proved quite persuadable and left the definition of a ‘bird’ entirely to me just so long as said defining included wings in its boundaries.

And that is why you see me here in this surprising form after I gave thought contemplatively. There is no better definition of a bird than dinosaur, in this case a DRAGON, no better way of living flight than to burn with fire simultaneously. — Of Winged Things, a fairytale by Annette Marie Smith

You may not see them

Photography, Irradiated Bird, by Julie Poncet

“We all have wings. You may not see them but you can hear them rustle. You can feel the rush of the places they carry you. These wings that I speak of are located right behind our eyes.” — Lyssa of the Arboreal Shades from the Night Fairytales series by Annette Marie Smith