There comes a time in the life of every cygnet, classified by the peers of ducklings, as ‘ugly’ – having been endowed with features like long necks and bills and significantly different from its peers.

But the cygnet itself doesn’t know that a long neck is functionally needed when it would take flight. But till it takes flight, it needs to be schooled in socialism of having to live with those waterfowls bound for the slushy ponds.

It is that inner voice, indelibly marked in its genes, which withstands those cackles and suffers its cohabitation and feeding on the same fish and worms.

One day – the day of its initiation as a swan – it watches a bevy of swans in flight and aspires to join them. The grown up swan still beset with those cygnet experiences wondered if it could ever be a part of the bevy in flight.

But this swan was unable to realise its ‘being’ – having been caught up with the inanities of the ducklings, ducks and drakes. Finally like that ‘Ugly Duckling’ throwing itself at the bevy of swans, the cygnet which threw itself among the swans made him realise that he himself was one of their breed.

A realisation which dawns when he sees his own reflection on the lake. When he discovers that he is similar to those birds which he had aspired to become; and having been warmly welcomed by the herd, he becomes one of those.

The newly aware swan had left his limited habitat of his barn-stuck siblings, though with much travails for not having conformed to the standards of those barn animals as a cygnet.

There are and will be ducks, geese, pigs, sheep and other barn animals which would resent the ‘good fortune’ of the ugly duckling, little realising that it was the ‘good fortune’ of those barn animals to have had the opportunity of sharing time with a swan – a breed meant only for fresh water, high skies and winged for long haul flights.

The swan has no time to hold grudges on those barn animals and birds. They would become a matter of memory – a distant & laughable one – where randomness had taken him to sojourn with, in his fledgling years.

The swan also realised that mortality would strike both the barn birds and the flight birds alike, yet the thought was gratifying that he had been to variegated geographical locations and wouldn’t be sure of where his last resting place. But he had the assurance that he would not rot among those barn animals and become fertiliser to the plants and trees chosen by those scrubby farmhands!

Live with dignity & Die in Liberty.