Saturday, October 22, 2022


I'm standing on a great plain with no trees or buildings in sight, and I notice a faint hum of engine noise. I look up. Airplanes or airships that must be of enormous size, though they are barely dots because they are so high, are flying in formation across a crystalline, cloudless sky, leaving tiny, precise contrails miles above me. They seem not to have come from any of the cardinal points but simply to have descended from the stratosphere. As I watch I see white parachutes emerging, opening and hanging in the air like dandelion seeds, but the skydivers don't descend; they simply hover in space, dancing and parading together, held aloft no doubt by powerful high-altitude winds.

A crowd has gathered. I hear the cough of a police radio at my back and air-raid sirens somewhere in the distance. Strobe lights flicker. Military vehicles appear, steered by grim-faced men in helmets and dark glasses.

The aircraft are moving over our heads at what must be terrific speed, though from the ground they barely seem to creep. The parachutists, too, are drifting away, still whirling in tight patterns and showing no sign of coming to earth. The crowd thins and the vehicles race off and disappear from sight. The plain darkens as the sun falls behind distant mountains. All is quiet.

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