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The Fly Ravine.

(from The Loser by Marcella Belly.)

"This place is a marvel," she said solemnly. "It is where we met. It belongs to us." Well, since it meant so much to her I think I might as well describe it to you here and extend her fondness a little farther.

The Fly Ravine, then, is all of these things: the source of the Fly River, well hidden within the Two Shows Ranges; a great, solid gash in a wall of rock; a hurley-burley of water and wind; a world of implacable, stone angles whipped by spume; and the great natural love of my love, Eugenia Thicket. Trickling across the mountain above all this fury is the narrow path where we walked. The violence of the spectacle below us was so pronounced that this path, this tiny thread of ground that sometimes approached being horizontal, was dearer to me than any amount of spray and drama. You readers who believe that I have devoted too much of this story to insubstantial details might like to remember that our minds will make the slightest event into an affair of great importance, as long as something in that slight event is relevant to our dearest interest, ie, ourselves.

The wind blew up from the depths like a shout and I mentioned the pleasant coolness of the air; we went a little farther and cool became cold. We were approaching the waterfall. Its plunge began from a lip of rock well above our heads. I craned my head back to see the top and the sun dazzled me over the edge of the cliff as it would later dazzle me through the beehives near On The Hilltop. (see, dear reader, how skillfully I weave this incident together with the opening paragraphs of my book!) Behind me the ravine ran away into the mountains, chasing the river as it tore along between cliffs and outcroppings, punctuated by smaller waterfalls until the cliffs and outcroppings and waterfalls dwindled away, abandoning the river to a domestic life among the plants of Gum Gooloo and through the relatively flat remainder of the country. And how did this affect me? It did not. See the end of my last paragraph. My eyes were on Eugenia and I was happy.