warning, cut for unpleasant imagery.
So, I'm driving home on 405 Southbound, and it's moderately full, but still able to go the 60mph speed limit. I'm a little sleepy, I'm looking forward to getting home.
I notice that the car ahead of me is slowing down and swerving to avoid...
to avoid a (mother?) duck and a dozen ducklings. Walking across the highway from right to left. All in formation, marching along. A whimsical little parade. It reminds me of the children's book "Make Way for Ducklings".
The beauty and charm of this image register well before the terrible wrongness of trying to march ducklings across traffic. Before I realize that the car in the left hand lane is not slowing down. Is not avoiding.
The shape that bounces out from under the vehicle was once a duck, but is no longer.
I think there are a number of the ducklings that also suffer a fast demise. Perhaps they don't suffer at all.
A few seconds, a quick glimpse of something wonderful, shattered by insistent misfortune. What does one do with that experience? Do you tell your friends, or is it too grotesque, too awful? Is there something beautiful buried in it? Is it terrible to even think that?
Will it come back in dreams, in unbidden visions? If not, is that even more terrible?