I know that I've already posted a picture of the swans that have so brightened my day and my drive on so many occasions. My kids and I will stop just to watch them even if I don't have my camera. The family of swans has brought so much happiness and even hope to so many people that drive that particular stretch of rural road. I say hope because of the emotional loss of the family of swans that used to reside on that exact pond for years before their untimely and devastating deaths in 2009. The swan family was found dead by the side of the road near the pond that had been home to the parent swans that came back every year for many years to bare and raise their young. That corner had been so vastly photographed by people who lived near and far because of the beauty of that swan family. Their loss brought so much sorrow.
This past summer when a pair of adult swans showed up on that little pond to nest and raise a family it brought immeasurable delight to all who admired the previous family as well as the people who had only heard about them upon their death. I believe, for myself at least, the arrival of the new adult swans brought hope. The hope that even after such tragedy their can be beauty. Over the last several months I have taken numerous pictures of our new little swan family that had taken residence. The attentively loving parents raised 5 cygnets to near adulthood. While we've thus far had unseasonably warm weather I have been very surprised to still see them on the pond so late in the season. Last Thursday when I photographed them I was a little concerned to only see two of the babies but thought that the other three might just be elsewhere on the pond. Yesterday however, I heard some very disturbing news. In early December (I haven't driven that route due to our Christmas break taking us in different directions) two of the baby swans were shot to death by hunters. One of the cygnets was simply missing with no explanation. I fear what that means. After hearing this heartbreaking news I found myself with cause to drive by that pond again today. It was quite a majestic however lonely sight to see the two parent swans by themselves gliding across the pond without their babies that they so diligently and lovingly cared for over the last several months. I'd like to think that the two last cygnets that were so serenely bathing in the pond with their parents simply took flight to start their own adult lives, however the recent events leave me skeptical.
So I now mourn the deaths of those beautiful creatures that have made me admire, smile, laugh, and now cry.
I have looked forward to seeing them every time I pass that way and will now sorely miss them.
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