Seeing egrets on the marshes at Blakeney reminded me of a vivid and disturbing dream I had many years ago.
The pure white egret was a slender and elegant bird but somehow it had managed to swallow whole a coarse grey farmyard gander.
The gander was still alive and, to save itself, it thrust its head and its neck upwards out of the egret’s throat, splitting the white bird open and setting itself free.
How delighted that coarse and brutal bird was, not just to have saved itself and killed the egret, but to be, indisputably, the aggrieved party over that beautiful and graceful creature who everyone had loved and admired.
So pleased and gleeful the gander was that it put on its best waistcoat and chain, harnessed up a coach and four and, tying the body of the egret behind it, drove round and round triumphantly and at great speed, until the egret’s soiled and bloody remains had broken up and fallen away in pieces, leaving only its legs still dangling behind the gander’s carriage.