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September 2017, vol 13 no 3

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Els van Leeuwen


One day, just like that, the bats were gone, the trees quiet. Thousands of flying foxes, who had lived in that same spot for years, all vanished. Locals mused about where they might have gone and why, but nobody knew for sure. Their musky smell, their squabbling calls, their nightly peppering of the evening skies . . . all eerily and inexplicably removed. How was this orchestrated amongst them? Which of their many and varied calls were the calls used to say ‘now’ and ‘let’s go’ and ‘this way’? Those who had observed the colony for years were left pondering such questions in vain . . . until one day, disturbing the birds, the bats came back, and resumed their noisy communal life in those trees as if nothing had happened.

after class
the silence
of settling dust