Tyra: Hey you, who are you?
Swamp Thing: My name is Swampy.
T: Glad to meet you. My name is Tyra.
S: Tyra? That’s an odd name.
T: It means spark or glimmer. My sire was named Tindur, which means kindling, and my dam was named Tinna, which means coal.
S: Well then, how come you aren’t called Spark and your parents respectively called Kindling and Coal.
T: We go by our Icelandic names.
T: Because we are Icelandic ponies.
S: Where I come from, Kodiak Island, there were wild ponies. They didn’t have names at all.
T: Did the goats have names?
Swampy the goat
S: Oh yes. We weren’t running wild.
T: Swamp Thing, what kind of a name is that?
S: My owner named me after a B-grade movie.
T: I have never seen a B-grade movie.
S: I looked in the house window once, and saw the movie, The Mummy going on.
T: Was a goat then named Mummy?
S: No. But I had a distant relation, a male goat, who was named Godzilla.
T: Wouldn’t it be nice if we could name ourselves?
S: Yes. I would change my name to Lily.
T: I would not change my name. I like the spark imagery.
S: All the animals around here think you are very smart.
T: This is because I am.
S: And they say you converse with the birds.
T: These days, just ravens.
S: And they say that you know about a lot of different things.
S: Okay. What do you know about extraterrestrials?
T: Quite a bit. You know, if you stand in a spot that is unobscured by the trees, you can, in the winter, see spaceships.
S: How do you know they are spaceships?
T: Because they move slowly, forwards, backwards, and up and down.
S: Do you think they mean to harm us?
T: No, I do not. I fear that we might harm them.
S: Yes, humans seem to at times be rather violent.
T: They can be. I just think, given their temperament, that they would not take kindly to having aliens walking around on their planet.
S: It does seem to me to be rather crowded.
T: And getting more so.
S: I have another question for you. Do you believe in reincarnation?
T: Of course.
S: What were you in a previous life?
T: I was an Egyptian pharaoh.
T: A Tibetan monk.
T: The list is quite long. For now, let’s leave it at that. How about you?
S: I have kept coming back as a goat.
T: I suspect you’ll move on as soon as you learn what it is that goats need to know.
S: Actually, there is not much that a domesticated goat needs to know.
T: Well, maybe you in your role as a goat are here to teach others things.
S: Yes. For instance, I am now here to teach Alys patience.
T: And I think that if you do have offspring, and one is a doe, you should name her patience.
S: This is a wonderful idea.
T: You and I, we should keep conversing.
S: And that is yet another wonderful idea.
Next: 157. 6/7/21: Bright Lights Shine Brightly