As I sit here on this rocky outcropping next to the waterfall, I feel the refreshing mist of the spray on my skin and the shade of the trees cools the air around me. Suddenly I hear a cry above, a shadow silhouettes the sun. I look up but it’s not the feathery wing of a bird, but a much larger wingspan, a leathery wing with sharp dangerous looking talons at each end. A serpentine tail flows like a kite behind the dragon that doesn’t see me yet.
Quickly I duck behind the boulder at the edge of the stream. I wait for the dragon to glide silently into the horizon of the setting sun.
Suddenly a glimmer appears in the quietly trickling stream. The sun has hit the water at just the right angle and it sparkles in my eyes. Catching my attention to the reflection in the water, I noticed there is something lying on the bottom of the river bed.
Checking to see if the dragon has decided to return and feeling safe that it has not, I wade into the stream. It’s not deep, only to my calves, but it’s icy cold and swiftly running. Carefully getting my footing I wade to the middle of the stream, there lodged between the bases of two boulders in the river bed I find the object of my search, the object reflecting the sunlight. It is difficult to grasp, its slick and slips through my fingers as they begin to freeze in the cold water. I need to get out of this stream soon. I’m so cold!
Finally, I feel it begin to give way, and I pull it from the water, its round but thin, shiny and about 3 inches in diameter. It looks a little like a mirror, but not exactly. It’s got clear blue tinges of color. It seems to be made of some sort of crystal. But, when I look at it I can see my reflection, I see myself and the sky above. Is there a shadow over me? I turn around quickly, but there is nothing there. Maybe it’s my imagination.
It begins to get late, I’m cold and wet. I have to find shelter. I need to make camp somewhere safe and out of sight from the dragon. I want to study this disk more closely. This disk, this strange object gives me tingles, every time I look at it I seem to see myself a little differently each time. Every time I look into the disk I see more than I expected, the landscape changes behind me as well. What’s going on?
Photo: Lair of the Bear Park, Gunnison, Colorado. Photography by Candace Stauber, 2015