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An Australian Platypus Essay Research Paper An

An Australian Platypus Essay, Research Paper An Australian Platypus Down in the depths of the Australian Rainforest. There is a small murky pond surrounded by thick green moist foliage. It sits in the center of a deep dense rainforest alive with the chirps and clicks of the animals of the forest. In that pond, on a small gray rock, there was a platypus by the name of Karl Ward.

An Australian Platypus Essay, Research Paper

An Australian Platypus

Down in the depths of the Australian Rainforest. There is a small murky pond surrounded by thick green moist foliage. It sits in the center of a deep dense rainforest alive with the chirps and clicks of the animals of the forest. In that pond, on a small gray rock, there was a platypus by the name of Karl Ward. All day he lazily lay there on the sun warmed rock gazing up at the tree-shadowed sun. Karl the platypus had no worries. His small mind was filled with his own contentment and what surrounded him in this little sludgy pond. He laid there on his rock watching the different animals surrounding the small pond. He gazed aloofly at two kiwala bears slothfully chewing at shards of green moist grass. These kahwala bears also had their faces turned toward the sun warming themselves in its rays. Karl laid there; watching as a brightly colored gecko skirted toward the pond’s edge. It was a bright orange with little black specks. The gecko proceeded to immerse itself in the water and then slide out quickly; repeating this motion several times. Watching this gecko, Karl Ward the platypus realized he was hungry. He waded through the water searching as he always did for the little grubs, which stuck under the surface feeding on the algae accumulating on the top of the pond. He ate a few and then returned to his rock. He sat there, thinking of nothing, but the calming noises of the rainforest and the warm sun caressing his little furry body. He sat there as he did everyday, contemplating nothing, thinking about nothing. Just feeling worm and content on his small place in the world, his gray stone.

It began to get dark and he curled into a little ball ready to rest his furry body. He lay there motionless with his mind blank in a sleeping state, for platypuses do not normally dream. That night though a dream did form whirling through his brain and rippling his small subconscious. He dreamt that night of a huge stone ball rolling down a hill. This floating in empty space surrounded by endless black. The hill itself was smooth and brown with few ditches and mounds. He followed it and followed it as it seemed to roll farther and farther down this never ending hill though never changing it?s speed. As it rolled at this continuous pace down the hill he began to feel himself changing. These changes were small at first, such as a little itch on his cheek or arm. Then he began to feel himself grow larger and larger and his furry skin began to itch violently. The monstrous stone ball continued to roll down the hill and Karl Ward the platypus continued to physically change as he followed it. Then the boulder slowly came to a stop. Karl slowly crawled around and to his amazement he saw standing in front of him a huge mirror. It was tall and gold plated suspended in air gleaming from some unseen light. He raised his eyes to look straight into the mirror, but he now was no longer looking at the image he had always seen back in his muggy pond. In it?s place was the face of a young blond boy. He was startled and didn?t know who that man was, but his little platypus brain was quick to except this change. He stood there in the same position staring at this luminous mirror, when something caused him to began to move closer toward it. He sluggishly crawled closer and closer to this mirror. When he was only a breath away he reached up with his new human hand and touched the mirror. It seemed to ripple like water and his hand glided through it like liquid silver. He then raised his other hand and slowly slid it into the still flowing silk like mirror. He crawled closer and closer to this mirror melding himself with it and his new image. As his new body was completely immersed in the liquid mirror a brilliant light flashed and split the silvery glow.

He could barely fit on his little stone when he woke up. HE awkwardly slid and tumbled from side to side of the now little gray stone. After a while of this turning he slipped off of his rock and splashed into the thick murky water. He tried to swim but his new body clumsily caught the water and only hindered him more. He began to sink but soon realized that his new larger size would come in contact with the bottom of the pond before he had chance of drowning. He hooked his human hands onto the smooth stones in the floor of the pond and tried to crawl over the muddy bottom, moving toward the shore. The shore itself seemed much closer to him then it had before as he pulled himself slowly over the rocky bottom. Finally, he grabbed the thick grassy shoreline and tried to kick his legs to push himself over the top. With a lot of effort, he ended up on the grassy shore. Laying there he could feel the soft grass on his smooth hairless limbs and the sun on his back. He lay there for a while, when he felt a slight burning sensation on his back. He yelped and was startled by the sound this alien shell made. He realized then that everything had changed. He never questioned if the dream was real or not. He knew the second he woke up that he was that fleshy form seen in the mirror. He didn?t question why it had happened, he could not understand it so it let all questions pass.

Over the next few days he slowly tried to gain control of this new unusual body. These new human senses were all different. As he looked around things, objects of all kind, seemed to sparkle with clarity. He peered up at the sun and his eyes began to blink from the bright stinging light. He looked away and saw small colored impeding his new clear vision. He slowly started to crawl around on his new knees and hands. Stones dug into his knees and gave began to give him waves of pains. He tried crawling on his now webless feet while still holding the ground with his hands. He soon realized that that position would be impossible. He bared the pain it caused his knees and slowly crawled over to a cluster of gutting stones on the side of a powdery dirt cliff. Behind these couplings of rocks there was a small sheltered inlet where he could rest now for he had grown tired from all the strenuous activities of this new and unnatural body. He quickly crawled in backward into this little cubbyhole and crouched down. He leaned his smooth face against the cold dirt wall of the cliff and let out an exasperated sigh. He then began to doze off once again. That night his sleep was filled with dreams. Filled with wizzing noises and bright sparkling lights, which whirled round and round in his head.

He awoke the next morning sore and tight from his sleeping position. He clung to the outer ridge of a stone boulder and strenuously pulled himself out of his shelter allowing his feet to drag behind him. After he had achieved this, he lay on the soft moss, which surrounded the outside of his little shelter. Laying there with his face toward the sky he seemed to feel the activity of the rainforest. He closed his eyes and listened with his new ears to the singing of the birds and the clicking of the koalas. A wave of hunger passed over him and he realized that he needed to find some food. The thought of eating algae grubs disgusted him so he decided to crawl around the small vicinity around the pond. He felt the stones jabbing his knees again and decided that this hunt would probably be short lived. He slowly moved around occasionally lifting one of his hands to slide it against a plant of some sort; as if he was trying to decipher if he could eat it by the way it felt. He continued to crawl delicately around for a while until he felt a small pinch on his lower back. He whirled his head around, to find a small creature, which in some ways resembled his own form. This creature that was crudely trying to hide it?s burnt brown body behind a wispy plant. Karl stared at this strange creature as it decided to throw another pebble at Karl. Now Karl was getting upset and in a quick but painful gesture he flipped himself around so he was facing this new creature. Seeing that Karl had not been fooled by it?s plant camouflage, the creature crept out from behind it?s hiding place and stood in front of Karl. Karl was quite puzzled by this creature. He could not tell it?s emotions. It seemed to be sneering at him, but he felt a benevolence radiating from it also. This creature had the same body structure as Karl, but it very different from the mirror image Karl remembered. This creature had a rich burnt skin while Karl?s skin was a pale as the moon. This creature was also larger in size from Karl. It?s hair was the color charcoal and was smooth and straight. It was unruly and unkempt as was the rest of it. Dirt encrusted it?s fingernails and a dark shadow of dirt outlined it?s entire body. Around it?s waist it wore a small piece of an animals skin. It continued to stare at him with that strange happy sneer and then began to cough and gasp while still sneering. He saw the same amusement in it?s eyes so Karl knew it was not hostile, but he could not understand the meaning of these actions.

While contemplating this happy sneer, Karl Ward was interrupted by the sound of quick crashings in the woods. These fluctuating sounds were moving closer and closer to Karl and the creature. Karl became slightly nervous for this was all confusing him. Two more of these creatures stepped out of the thick green border and stopped in their tracks when the saw Karl. Karl stared right back at them as he knelt in his awkward knee hurting position. These other two creatures also had brown burnt skin and charcoal covered hair. They even wore an animal skin like the pebble-throwing creature. They stared at him and began to make these sounds to each other, which Karl couldn?t comprehend. He stared at their mouths watching them move up and down and form different shapes and listened to the strange noises which these shapes made. They then began making the sounds in the direction of the first creature and to Karl?s astonishment, the happy sneering creature made these unusual sounds back. The other two looked at Karl and then looked back at the first creature. They sighed and grew calm. They also began to sneer and make cough and gasping noises. This helped Karl to relax, because he could tell that the other two creatures were not angry, so Karl was not in danger. Then, to Karl?s amazement all three of them left. Karl sat down and began to play with a leaf. He did not know what those three burnt skin creatures were, he was confused. He crawled over to the thick dark pond and looked at the image of the human he had become. He had become very dirty like those two creatures and his skin had turned slightly red. He leaned closer and closer to the pool of water in front of him and then he placed his right hand on the water slowly letting it ripple and undulate. He let the water envelop his hand and watched it slowly sink below the surface. He peered into the murky water and watched little insects skittering left and right through the water. He saw orange and silvery fish streaming past his hand through the water. He pulled back his hand from the water and lay down on his back. He closed his eyes and listened to the sounds of the jungle around him. He smiled to himself as a light wind playfully tugged at his wisps of hair. Then the crashing noises came back, except these noises were much louder. He opened his eyes just in time to see five burnt creatures throwing a thick straw net over him. Startled, Karl reached up and grabbed at the thick straw with his hands thrashing left and right trying vigorously to pull this course net off of himself. He began yelping and bouncing around as these burnt creatures picked him up in this net and began to carry him. The course ropes cut and burned into his naked skin and the sun jutting in and out from behind trees hurt his eyes. He continued yelping quieter now. But he had stopped physically resisting them. He watched how they moved on their feet with their hands free in the air. He also listened to them make sounds to each other as the towed them toward their destination. He sat and daydreamed about jumping back out of the liquid silver mirror and becoming a platypus again, but Karl knew that this was not possible.

The burnt creatures stopped walking and began making louder and louder sounds. He could see more of these creatures walking toward him. He was now scared again. All of these burnt creatures frightened him. He began yelping again, but the mass of burnt creatures still moved closer and closer. He kicked against the unyielding net. Trying one last time to escape this horror, but there was no use. The burnt creatures carrying him dropped him on the floor and he slowly found his way out of the net. All of the gathered burnt creatures stepped back and gasped as he tried to stand as the burnt creatures were. He pushed himself up with his hands and stood on his feet for five seconds when he wobbled and fell. He sat there on the ground looking around at them confused and scared. They stared back at him with the same look of confusion in their eyes. Finally one very large burnt creature picked him up and carried him toward a large wooden hut. It smelled of wood, charcoal, and oils. The large burnt creature set him down on a soft smooth place that was covered with animal furs and smelled also of oils and slightly of dirt. He looked down at it and rubbed his hands up and down the smooth comforting surface. He looked back up at the creature and the creature stared down at him and then quietly left the room. Karl lay there on this soft surface feeling his body molded into. He looked around the room and saw many different strange contraptions. One window high up on the wall caught his attention, he saw a tiny patch of blue sky gleaming through that small opening and it calmed him down. He stretched his arms and his legs and quickly fell asleep.

After a dreamless sleep another one of the burnt creatures awaked him. This creature was holding some sort of contraption and sitting on the edge of Karl?s soft mat. The creature handed the wooden contraption to Karl and he saw that inside there was some sort of liquid. The creature motioned for him to drink it and after some coaxing, he took a small sip of the liquid in side. It reminded him of the murky water of the pond, but sweeter and smoother. Lovely, the creature smiled at him and he smiled back at it. He began to feel that he would be happy here. Over the next few weeks he adapted to their atmosphere and began to conform to their ways. He could never really learn their language it seemed his brain could not catch up to the code. He began to understand gender and the distinction in between. He also began to become custom to their traditions and ways of the Aborigine culture, which is what this group was. He became content with his new lifestyle and even though he could not communicate with them he still became accustom to their seeming shrieks and cries that he now knew as words.

One day not far into the future of his first visit, he sat on to the top of a cliff next to their little village and watched the world around him. Little burnt children were bathing and splashing in the water. The moved like huge sparkly fish jumping and diving tumultuously through the water. He listening to them screams and giggles smiling to himself. He looked up into the sky and stared at the large blue mass. He watched huge white birds soar through the clouds and listened to their echoing cry. He looked down and across the huge gaping rainforest thick with lush green trees and life. He felt the wind flowing through his hair and felt totally at peace with the world around. He had not felt this way since he laid on his rock and stared up at the sun. He now realized the he was at peace with his New World as he had been in his Old World. He was content with this new life that had been given to him and know longer worried about what the future held.

Elin Anderson

Hons. World Lit. (7)

April 12, 1999

An Australian Platypus

Down in the depths of the Australian Rainforest. There is a small murky pond surrounded by thick green moist foliage. It sits in the center of a deep dense rainforest alive with the chirps and clicks of the animals of the forest. In that pond, on a small gray rock, there was a platypus by the name of Karl Ward. All day he lazily lay there on the sun warmed rock gazing up at the tree-shadowed sun. Karl the platypus had no worries. His small mind was filled with his own contentment and what surrounded him in this little sludgy pond. He laid there on his rock watching the different animals surrounding the small pond. He gazed aloofly at two kiwala bears slothfully chewing at shards of green moist grass. These kahwala bears also had their faces turned toward the sun warming themselves in its rays. Karl laid there; watching as a brightly colored gecko skirted toward the pond’s edge. It was a bright orange with little black specks. The gecko proceeded to immerse itself in the water and then slide out quickly; repeating this motion several times. Watching this gecko, Karl Ward the platypus realized he was hungry. He waded through the water searching as he always did for the little grubs, which stuck under the surface feeding on the algae accumulating on the top of the pond. He ate a few and then returned to his rock. He sat there, thinking of nothing, but the calming noises of the rainforest and the warm sun caressing his little furry body. He sat there as he did everyday, contemplating nothing, thinking about nothing. Just feeling worm and content on his small place in the world, his gray stone.

It began to get dark and he curled into a little ball ready to rest his furry body. He lay there motionless with his mind blank in a sleeping state, for platypuses do not normally dream. That night though a dream did form whirling through his brain and rippling his small subconscious. He dreamt that night of a huge stone ball rolling down a hill. This floating in empty space surrounded by endless black. The hill itself was smooth and brown with few ditches and mounds. He followed it and followed it as it seemed to roll farther and farther down this never ending hill though never changing it?s speed. As it rolled at this continuous pace down the hill he began to feel himself changing. These changes were small at first, such as a little itch on his cheek or arm. Then he began to feel himself grow larger and larger and his furry skin began to itch violently. The monstrous stone ball continued to roll down the hill and Karl Ward the platypus continued to physically change as he followed it. Then the boulder slowly came to a stop. Karl slowly crawled around and to his amazement he saw standing in front of him a huge mirror. It was tall and gold plated suspended in air gleaming from some unseen light. He raised his eyes to look straight into the mirror, but he now was no longer looking at the image he had always seen back in his muggy pond. In it?s place was the face of a young blond boy. He was startled and didn?t know who that man was, but his little platypus brain was quick to except this change. He stood there in the same position staring at this luminous mirror, when something caused him to began to move closer toward it. He sluggishly crawled closer and closer to this mirror. When he was only a breath away he reached up with his new human hand and touched the mirror. It seemed to ripple like water and his hand glided through it like liquid silver. He then raised his other hand and slowly slid it into the still flowing silk like mirror. He crawled closer and closer to this mirror melding himself with it and his new image. As his new body was completely immersed in the liquid mirror a brilliant light flashed and split the silvery glow.

He could barely fit on his little stone when he woke up. HE awkwardly slid and tumbled from side to side of the now little gray stone. After a while of this turning he slipped off of his rock and splashed into the thick murky water. He tried to swim but his new body clumsily caught the water and only hindered him more. He began to sink but soon realized that his new larger size would come in contact with the bottom of the pond before he had chance of drowning. He hooked his human hands onto the smooth stones in the floor of the pond and tried to crawl over the muddy bottom, moving toward the shore. The shore itself seemed much closer to him then it had before as he pulled himself slowly over the rocky bottom. Finally, he grabbed the thick grassy shoreline and tried to kick his legs to push himself over the top. With a lot of effort, he ended up on the grassy shore. Laying there he could feel the soft grass on his smooth hairless limbs and the sun on his back. He lay there for a while, when he felt a slight burning sensation on his back. He yelped and was startled by the sound this alien shell made. He realized then that everything had changed. He never questioned if the dream was real or not. He knew the second he woke up that he was that fleshy form seen in the mirror. He didn?t question why it had happened, he could not understand it so it let all questions pass.

Over the next few days he slowly tried to gain control of this new unusual body. These new human senses were all different. As he looked around things, objects of all kind, seemed to sparkle with clarity. He peered up at the sun and his eyes began to blink from the bright stinging light. He looked away and saw small colored impeding his new clear vision. He slowly started to crawl around on his new knees and hands. Stones dug into his knees and gave began to give him waves of pains. He tried crawling on his now webless feet while still holding the ground with his hands. He soon realized that that position would be impossible. He bared the pain it caused his knees and slowly crawled over to a cluster of gutting stones on the side of a powdery dirt cliff. Behind these couplings of rocks there was a small sheltered inlet where he could rest now for he had grown tired from all the strenuous activities of this new and unnatural body. He quickly crawled in backward into this little cubbyhole and crouched down. He leaned his smooth face against the cold dirt wall of the cliff and let out an exasperated sigh. He then began to doze off once again. That night his sleep was filled with dreams. Filled with wizzing noises and bright sparkling lights, which whirled round and round in his head.

He awoke the next morning sore and tight from his sleeping position. He clung to the outer ridge of a stone boulder and strenuously pulled himself out of his shelter allowing his feet to drag behind him. After he had achieved this, he lay on the soft moss, which surrounded the outside of his little shelter. Laying there with his face toward the sky he seemed to feel the activity of the rainforest. He closed his eyes and listened with his new ears to the singing of the birds and the clicking of the koalas. A wave of hunger passed over him and he realized that he needed to find some food. The thought of eating algae grubs disgusted him so he decided to crawl around the small vicinity around the pond. He felt the stones jabbing his knees again and decided that this hunt would probably be short lived. He slowly moved around occasionally lifting one of his hands to slide it against a plant of some sort; as if he was trying to decipher if he could eat it by the way it felt. He continued to crawl delicately around for a while until he felt a small pinch on his lower back. He whirled his head around, to find a small creature, which in some ways resembled his own form. This creature that was crudely trying to hide it?s burnt brown body behind a wispy plant. Karl stared at this strange creature as it decided to throw another pebble at Karl. Now Karl was getting upset and in a quick but painful gesture he flipped himself around so he was facing this new creature. Seeing that Karl had not been fooled by it?s plant camouflage, the creature crept out from behind it?s hiding place and stood in front of Karl. Karl was quite puzzled by this creature. He could not tell it?s emotions. It seemed to be sneering at him, but he felt a benevolence radiating from it also. This creature had the same body structure as Karl, but it very different from the mirror image Karl remembered. This creature had a rich burnt skin while Karl?s skin was a pale as the moon. This creature was also larger in size from Karl. It?s hair was the color charcoal and was smooth and straight. It was unruly and unkempt as was the rest of it. Dirt encrusted it?s fingernails and a dark shadow of dirt outlined it?s entire body. Around it?s waist it wore a small piece of an animals skin. It continued to stare at him with that strange happy sneer and then began to cough and gasp while still sneering. He saw the same amusement in it?s eyes so Karl knew it was not hostile, but he could not understand the meaning of these actions.

While contemplating this happy sneer, Karl Ward was interrupted by the sound of quick crashings in the woods. These fluctuating sounds were moving closer and closer to Karl and the creature. Karl became slightly nervous for this was all confusing him. Two more of these creatures stepped out of the thick green border and stopped in their tracks when the saw Karl. Karl stared right back at them as he knelt in his awkward knee hurting position. These other two creatures also had brown burnt skin and charcoal covered hair. They even wore an animal skin like the pebble-throwing creature. They stared at him and began to make these sounds to each other, which Karl couldn?t comprehend. He stared at their mouths watching them move up and down and form different shapes and listened to the strange noises which these shapes made. They then began making the sounds in the direction of the first creature and to Karl?s astonishment, the happy sneering creature made these unusual sounds back. The other two looked at Karl and then looked back at the first creature. They sighed and grew calm. They also began to sneer and make cough and gasping noises. This helped Karl to relax, because he could tell that the other two creatures were not angry, so Karl was not in danger. Then, to Karl?s amazement all three of them left. Karl sat down and began to play with a leaf. He did not know what those three burnt skin creatures were, he was confused. He crawled over to the thick dark pond and looked at the image of the human he had become. He had become very dirty like those two creatures and his skin had turned slightly red. He leaned closer and closer to the pool of water in front of him and then he placed his right hand on the water slowly letting it ripple and undulate. He let the water envelop his hand and watched it slowly sink below the surface. He peered into the murky water and watched little insects skittering left and right through the water. He saw orange and silvery fish streaming past his hand through the water. He pulled back his hand from the water and lay down on his back. He closed his eyes and listened to the sounds of the jungle around him. He smiled to himself as a light wind playfully tugged at his wisps of hair. Then the crashing noises came back, except these noises were much louder. He opened his eyes just in time to see five burnt creatures throwing a thick straw net over him. Startled, Karl reached up and grabbed at the thick straw with his hands thrashing left and right trying vigorously to pull this course net off of himself. He began yelping and bouncing around as these burnt creatures picked him up in this net and began to carry him. The course ropes cut and burned into his naked skin and the sun jutting in and out from behind trees hurt his eyes. He continued yelping quieter now. But he had stopped physically resisting them. He watched how they moved on their feet with their hands free in the air. He also listened to them make sounds to each other as the towed them toward their destination. He sat and daydreamed about jumping back out of the liquid silver mirror and becoming a platypus again, but Karl knew that this was not possible.

The burnt creatures stopped walking and began making louder and louder sounds. He could see more of these creatures walking toward him. He was now scared again. All of these burnt creatures frightened him. He began yelping again, but the mass of burnt creatures still moved closer and closer. He kicked against the unyielding net. Trying one last time to escape this horror, but there was no use. The burnt creatures carrying him dropped him on the floor and he slowly found his way out of the net. All of the gathered burnt creatures stepped back and gasped as he tried to stand as the burnt creatures were. He pushed himself up with his hands and stood on his feet for five seconds when he wobbled and fell. He sat there on the ground looking around at them confused and scared. They stared back at him with the same look of confusion in their eyes. Finally one very large burnt creature picked him up and carried him toward a large wooden hut. It smelled of wood, charcoal, and oils. The large burnt creature set him down on a soft smooth place that was covered with animal furs and smelled also of oils and slightly of dirt. He looked down at it and rubbed his hands up and down the smooth comforting surface. He looked back up at the creature and the creature stared down at him and then quietly left the room. Karl lay there on this soft surface feeling his body molded into. He looked around the room and saw many different strange contraptions. One window high up on the wall caught his attention, he saw a tiny patch of blue sky gleaming through that small opening and it calmed him down. He stretched his arms and his legs and quickly fell asleep.

After a dreamless sleep another one of the burnt creatures awaked him. This creature was holding some sort of contraption and sitting on the edge of Karl?s soft mat. The creature handed the wooden contraption to Karl and he saw that inside there was some sort of liquid. The creature motioned for him to drink it and after some coaxing, he took a small sip of the liquid in side. It reminded him of the murky water of the pond, but sweeter and smoother. Lovely, the creature smiled at him and he smiled back at it. He began to feel that he would be happy here. Over the next few weeks he adapted to their atmosphere and began to conform to their ways. He could never really learn their language it seemed his brain could not catch up to the code. He began to understand gender and the distinction in between. He also began to become custom to their traditions and ways of the Aborigine culture, which is what this group was. He became content with his new lifestyle and even though he could not communicate with them he still became accustom to their seeming shrieks and cries that he now knew as words.

One day not far into the future of his first visit, he sat on to the top of a cliff next to their little village and watched the world around him. Little burnt children were bathing and splashing in the water. The moved like huge sparkly fish jumping and diving tumultuously through the water. He listening to them screams and giggles smiling to himself. He looked up into the sky and stared at the large blue mass. He watched huge white birds soar through the clouds and listened to their echoing cry. He looked down and across the huge gaping rainforest thick with lush green trees and life. He felt the wind flowing through his hair and felt totally at peace with the world around. He had not felt this way since he laid on his rock and stared up at the sun. He now realized the he was at peace with his New World as he had been in his Old World. He was content with this new life that had been given to him and know longer worried about what the future held.

Elin Anderson

Hons. World Lit. (7)

April 12, 1999

An Australian Platypus

Down in the depths of the Australian Rainforest. There is a small murky pond surrounded by thick green moist foliage. It sits in the center of a deep dense rainforest alive with the chirps and clicks of the animals of the forest. In that pond, on a small gray rock, there was a platypus by the name of Karl Ward. All day he lazily lay there on the sun warmed rock gazing up at the tree-shadowed sun. Karl the platypus had no worries. His small mind was filled with his own contentment and what surrounded him in this little sludgy pond. He laid there on his rock watching the different animals surrounding the small pond. He gazed aloofly at two kiwala bears slothfully chewing at shards of green moist grass. These kahwala bears also had their faces turned toward the sun warming themselves in its rays. Karl laid there; watching as a brightly colored gecko skirted toward the pond’s edge. It was a bright orange with little black specks. The gecko proceeded to immerse itself in the water and then slide out quickly; repeating this motion several times. Watching this gecko, Karl Ward the platypus realized he was hungry. He waded through the water searching as he always did for the little grubs, which stuck under the surface feeding on the algae accumulating on the top of the pond. He ate a few and then returned to his rock. He sat there, thinking of nothing, but the calming noises of the rainforest and the warm sun caressing his little furry body. He sat there as he did everyday, contemplating nothing, thinking about nothing. Just feeling worm and content on his small place in the world, his gray stone.

It began to get dark and he curled into a little ball ready to rest his furry body. He lay there motionless with his mind blank in a sleeping state, for platypuses do not normally dream. That night though a dream did form whirling through his brain and rippling his small subconscious. He dreamt that night of a huge stone ball rolling down a hill. This floating in empty space surrounded by endless black. The hill itself was smooth and brown with few ditches and mounds. He followed it and followed it as it seemed to roll farther and farther down this never ending hill though never changing it?s speed. As it rolled at this continuous pace down the hill he began to feel himself changing. These changes were small at first, such as a little itch on his cheek or arm. Then he began to feel himself grow larger and larger and his furry skin began to itch violently. The monstrous stone ball continued to roll down the hill and Karl Ward the platypus continued to physically change as he followed it. Then the boulder slowly came to a stop. Karl slowly crawled around and to his amazement he saw standing in front of him a huge mirror. It was tall and gold plated suspended in air gleaming from some unseen light. He raised his eyes to look straight into the mirror, but he now was no longer looking at the image he had always seen back in his muggy pond. In it?s place was the face of a young blond boy. He was startled and didn?t know who that man was, but his little platypus brain was quick to except this change. He stood there in the same position staring at this luminous mirror, when something caused him to began to move closer toward it. He sluggishly crawled closer and closer to this mirror. When he was only a breath away he reached up with his new human hand and touched the mirror. It seemed to ripple like water and his hand glided through it like liquid silver. He then raised his other hand and slowly slid it into the still flowing silk like mirror. He crawled closer and closer to this mirror melding himself with it and his new image. As his new body was completely immersed in the liquid mirror a brilliant light flashed and split the silvery glow.

He could barely fit on his little stone when he woke up. HE awkwardly slid and tumbled from side to side of the now little gray stone. After a while of this turning he slipped off of his rock and splashed into the thick murky water. He tried to swim but his new body clumsily caught the water and only hindered him more. He began to sink but soon realized that his new larger size would come in contact with the bottom of the pond before he had chance of drowning. He hooked his human hands onto the smooth stones in the floor of the pond and tried to crawl over the muddy bottom, moving toward the shore. The shore itself seemed much closer to him then it had before as he pulled himself slowly over the rocky bottom. Finally, he grabbed the thick grassy shoreline and tried to kick his legs to push himself over the top. With a lot of effort, he ended up on the grassy shore. Laying there he could feel the soft grass on his smooth hairless limbs and the sun on his back. He lay there for a while, when he felt a slight burning sensation on his back. He yelped and was startled by the sound this alien shell made. He realized then that everything had changed. He never questioned if the dream was real or not. He knew the second he woke up that he was that fleshy form seen in the mirror. He didn?t question why it had happened, he could not understand it so it let all questions pass.

Over the next few days he slowly tried to gain control of this new unusual body. These new human senses were all different. As he looked around things, objects of all kind, seemed to sparkle with clarity. He peered up at the sun and his eyes began to blink from the bright stinging light. He looked away and saw small colored impeding his new clear vision. He slowly started to crawl around on his new knees and hands. Stones dug into his knees and gave began to give him waves of pains. He tried crawling on his now webless feet while still holding the ground with his hands. He soon realized that that position would be impossible. He bared the pain it caused his knees and slowly crawled over to a cluster of gutting stones on the side of a powdery dirt cliff. Behind these couplings of rocks there was a small sheltered inlet where he could rest now for he had grown tired from all the strenuous activities of this new and unnatural body. He quickly crawled in backward into this little cubbyhole and crouched down. He leaned his smooth face against the cold dirt wall of the cliff and let out an exasperated sigh. He then began to doze off once again. That night his sleep was filled with dreams. Filled with wizzing noises and bright sparkling lights, which whirled round and round in his head.

He awoke the next morning sore and tight from his sleeping position. He clung to the outer ridge of a stone boulder and strenuously pulled himself out of his shelter allowing his feet to drag behind him. After he had achieved this, he lay on the soft moss, which surrounded the outside of his little shelter. Laying there with his face toward the sky he seemed to feel the activity of the rainforest. He closed his eyes and listened with his new ears to the singing of the birds and the clicking of the koalas. A wave of hunger passed over him and he realized that he needed to find some food. The thought of eating algae grubs disgusted him so he decided to crawl around the small vicinity around the pond. He felt the stones jabbing his knees again and decided that this hunt would probably be short lived. He slowly moved around occasionally lifting one of his hands to slide it against a plant of some sort; as if he was trying to decipher if he could eat it by the way it felt. He continued to crawl delicately around for a while until he felt a small pinch on his lower back. He whirled his head around, to find a small creature, which in some ways resembled his own form. This creature that was crudely trying to hide it?s burnt brown body behind a wispy plant. Karl stared at this strange creature as it decided to throw another pebble at Karl. Now Karl was getting upset and in a quick but painful gesture he flipped himself around so he was facing this new creature. Seeing that Karl had not been fooled by it?s plant camouflage, the creature crept out from behind it?s hiding place and stood in front of Karl. Karl was quite puzzled by this creature. He could not tell it?s emotions. It seemed to be sneering at him, but he felt a benevolence radiating from it also. This creature had the same body structure as Karl, but it very different from the mirror image Karl remembered. This creature had a rich burnt skin while Karl?s skin was a pale as the moon. This creature was also larger in size from Karl. It?s hair was the color charcoal and was smooth and straight. It was unruly and unkempt as was the rest of it. Dirt encrusted it?s fingernails and a dark shadow of dirt outlined it?s entire body. Around it?s waist it wore a small piece of an animals skin. It continued to stare at him with that strange happy sneer and then began to cough and gasp while still sneering. He saw the same amusement in it?s eyes so Karl knew it was not hostile, but he could not understand the meaning of these actions.

While contemplating this happy sneer, Karl Ward was interrupted by the sound of quick crashings in the woods. These fluctuating sounds were moving closer and closer to Karl and the creature. Karl became slightly nervous for this was all confusing him. Two more of these creatures stepped out of the thick green border and stopped in their tracks when the saw Karl. Karl stared right back at them as he knelt in his awkward knee hurting position. These other two creatures also had brown burnt skin and charcoal covered hair. They even wore an animal skin like the pebble-throwing creature. They stared at him and began to make these sounds to each other, which Karl couldn?t comprehend. He stared at their mouths watching them move up and down and form different shapes and listened to the strange noises which these shapes made. They then began making the sounds in the direction of the first creature and to Karl?s astonishment, the happy sneering creature made these unusual sounds back. The other two looked at Karl and then looked back at the first creature. They sighed and grew calm. They also began to sneer and make cough and gasping noises. This helped Karl to relax, because he could tell that the other two creatures were not angry, so Karl was not in danger. Then, to Karl?s amazement all three of them left. Karl sat down and began to play with a leaf. He did not know what those three burnt skin creatures were, he was confused. He crawled over to the thick dark pond and looked at the image of the human he had become. He had become very dirty like those two creatures and his skin had turned slightly red. He leaned closer and closer to the pool of water in front of him and then he placed his right hand on the water slowly letting it ripple and undulate. He let the water envelop his hand and watched it slowly sink below the surface. He peered into the murky water and watched little insects skittering left and right through the water. He saw orange and silvery fish streaming past his hand through the water. He pulled back his hand from the water and lay down on his back. He closed his eyes and listened to the sounds of the jungle around him. He smiled to himself as a light wind playfully tugged at his wisps of hair. Then the crashing noises came back, except these noises were much louder. He opened his eyes just in time to see five burnt creatures throwing a thick straw net over him. Startled, Karl reached up and grabbed at the thick straw with his hands thrashing left and right trying vigorously to pull this course net off of himself. He began yelping and bouncing around as these burnt creatures picked him up in this net and began to carry him. The course ropes cut and burned into his naked skin and the sun jutting in and out from behind trees hurt his eyes. He continued yelping quieter now. But he had stopped physically resisting them. He watched how they moved on their feet with their hands free in the air. He also listened to them make sounds to each other as the towed them toward their destination. He sat and daydreamed about jumping back out of the liquid silver mirror and becoming a platypus again, but Karl knew that this was not possible.

The burnt creatures stopped walking and began making louder and louder sounds. He could see more of these creatures walking toward him. He was now scared again. All of these burnt creatures frightened him. He began yelping again, but the mass of burnt creatures still moved closer and closer. He kicked against the unyielding net. Trying one last time to escape this horror, but there was no use. The burnt creatures carrying him dropped him on the floor and he slowly found his way out of the net. All of the gathered burnt creatures stepped back and gasped as he tried to stand as the burnt creatures were. He pushed himself up with his hands and stood on his feet for five seconds when he wobbled and fell. He sat there on the ground looking around at them confused and scared. They stared back at him with the same look of confusion in their eyes. Finally one very large burnt creature picked him up and carried him toward a large wooden hut. It smelled of wood, charcoal, and oils. The large burnt creature set him down on a soft smooth place that was covered with animal furs and smelled also of oils and slightly of dirt. He looked down at it and rubbed his hands up and down the smooth comforting surface. He looked back up at the creature and the creature stared down at him and then quietly left the room. Karl lay there on this soft surface feeling his body molded into. He looked around the room and saw many different strange contraptions. One window high up on the wall caught his attention, he saw a tiny patch of blue sky gleaming through that small opening and it calmed him down. He stretched his arms and his legs and quickly fell asleep.

After a dreamless sleep another one of the burnt creatures awaked him. This creature was holding some sort of contraption and sitting on the edge of Karl?s soft mat. The creature handed the wooden contraption to Karl and he saw that inside there was some sort of liquid. The creature motioned for him to drink it and after some coaxing, he took a small sip of the liquid in side. It reminded him of the murky water of the pond, but sweeter and smoother. Lovely, the creature smiled at him and he smiled back at it. He began to feel that he would be happy here. Over the next few weeks he adapted to their atmosphere and began to conform to their ways. He could never really learn their language it seemed his brain could not catch up to the code. He began to understand gender and the distinction in between. He also began to become custom to their traditions and ways of the Aborigine culture, which is what this group was. He became content with his new lifestyle and even though he could not communicate with them he still became accustom to their seeming shrieks and cries that he now knew as words.

One day not far into the future of his first visit, he sat on to the top of a cliff next to their little village and watched the world around him. Little burnt children were bathing and splashing in the water. The moved like huge sparkly fish jumping and diving tumultuously through the water. He listening to them screams and giggles smiling to himself. He looked up into the sky and stared at the large blue mass. He watched huge white birds soar through the clouds and listened to their echoing cry. He looked down and across the huge gaping rainforest thick with lush green trees and life. He felt the wind flowing through his hair and felt totally at peace with the world around. He had not felt this way since he laid on his rock and stared up at the sun. He now realized the he was at peace with his New World as he had been in his Old World. He was content with this new life that had been given to him and know longer worried about what the future held.

Elin Anderson

Hons. World Lit. (7)

April 12, 1999

An Australian Platypus

Down in the depths of the Australian Rainforest. There is a small murky pond surrounded by thick green moist foliage. It sits in the center of a deep dense rainforest alive with the chirps and clicks of the animals of the forest. In that pond, on a small gray rock, there was a platypus by the name of Karl Ward. All day he lazily lay there on the sun warmed rock gazing up at the tree-shadowed sun. Karl the platypus had no worries. His small mind was filled with his own contentment and what surrounded him in this little sludgy pond. He laid there on his rock watching the different animals surrounding the small pond. He gazed aloofly at two kiwala bears slothfully chewing at shards of green moist grass. These kahwala bears also had their faces turned toward the sun warming themselves in its rays. Karl laid there; watching as a brightly colored gecko skirted toward the pond’s edge. It was a bright orange with little black specks. The gecko proceeded to immerse itself in the water and then slide out quickly; repeating this motion several times. Watching this gecko, Karl Ward the platypus realized he was hungry. He waded through the water searching as he always did for the little grubs, which stuck under the surface feeding on the algae accumulating on the top of the pond. He ate a few and then returned to his rock. He sat there, thinking of nothing, but the calming noises of the rainforest and the warm sun caressing his little furry body. He sat there as he did everyday, contemplating nothing, thinking about nothing. Just feeling worm and content on his small place in the world, his gray stone.

It began to get dark and he curled into a little ball ready to rest his furry body. He lay there motionless with his mind blank in a sleeping state, for platypuses do not normally dream. That night though a dream did form whirling through his brain and rippling his small subconscious. He dreamt that night of a huge stone ball rolling down a hill. This floating in empty space surrounded by endless black. The hill itself was smooth and brown with few ditches and mounds. He followed it and followed it as it seemed to roll farther and farther down this never ending hill though never changing it?s speed. As it rolled at this continuous pace down the hill he began to feel himself changing. These changes were small at first, such as a little itch on his cheek or arm. Then he began to feel himself grow larger and larger and his furry skin began to itch violently. The monstrous stone ball continued to roll down the hill and Karl Ward the platypus continued to physically change as he followed it. Then the boulder slowly came to a stop. Karl slowly crawled around and to his amazement he saw standing in front of him a huge mirror. It was tall and gold plated suspended in air gleaming from some unseen light. He raised his eyes to look straight into the mirror, but he now was no longer looking at the image he had always seen back in his muggy pond. In it?s place was the face of a young blond boy. He was startled and didn?t know who that man was, but his little platypus brain was quick to except this change. He stood there in the same position staring at this luminous mirror, when something caused him to began to move closer toward it. He sluggishly crawled closer and closer to this mirror. When he was only a breath away he reached up with his new human hand and touched the mirror. It seemed to ripple like water and his hand glided through it like liquid silver. He then raised his other hand and slowly slid it into the still flowing silk like mirror. He crawled closer and closer to this mirror melding himself with it and his new image. As his new body was completely immersed in the liquid mirror a brilliant light flashed and split the silvery glow.

He could barely fit on his little stone when he woke up. HE awkwardly slid and tumbled from side to side of the now little gray stone. After a while of this turning he slipped off of his rock and splashed into the thick murky water. He tried to swim but his new body clumsily caught the water and only hindered him more. He began to sink but soon realized that his new larger size would come in contact with the bottom of the pond before he had chance of drowning. He hooked his human hands onto the smooth stones in the floor of the pond and tried to crawl over the muddy bottom, moving toward the shore. The shore itself seemed much closer to him then it had before as he pulled himself slowly over the rocky bottom. Finally, he grabbed the thick grassy shoreline and tried to kick his legs to push himself over the top. With a lot of effort, he ended up on the grassy shore. Laying there he could feel the soft grass on his smooth hairless limbs and the sun on his back. He lay there for a while, when he felt a slight burning sensation on his back. He yelped and was startled by the sound this alien shell made. He realized then that everything had changed. He never questioned if the dream was real or not. He knew the second he woke up that he was that fleshy form seen in the mirror. He didn?t question why it had happened, he could not understand it so it let all questions pass.

Over the next few days he slowly tried to gain control of this new unusual body. These new human senses were all different. As he looked around things, objects of all kind, seemed to sparkle with clarity. He peered up at the sun and his eyes began to blink from the bright stinging light. He looked away and saw small colored impeding his new clear vision. He slowly started to crawl around on his new knees and hands. Stones dug into his knees and gave began to give him waves of pains. He tried crawling on his now webless feet while still holding the ground with his hands. He soon realized that that position would be impossible. He bared the pain it caused his knees and slowly crawled over to a cluster of gutting stones on the side of a powdery dirt cliff. Behind these couplings of rocks there was a small sheltered inlet where he could rest now for he had grown tired from all the strenuous activities of this new and unnatural body. He quickly crawled in backward into this little cubbyhole and crouched down. He leaned his smooth face against the cold dirt wall of the cliff and let out an exasperated sigh. He then began to doze off once again. That night his sleep was filled with dreams. Filled with wizzing noises and bright sparkling lights, which whirled round and round in his head.

He awoke the next morning sore and tight from his sleeping position. He clung to the outer ridge of a stone boulder and strenuously pulled himself out of his shelter allowing his feet to drag behind him. After he had achieved this, he lay on the soft moss, which surrounded the outside of his little shelter. Laying there with his face toward the sky he seemed to feel the activity of the rainforest. He closed his eyes and listened with his new ears to the singing of the birds and the clicking of the koalas. A wave of hunger passed over him and he realized that he needed to find some food. The thought of eating algae grubs disgusted him so he decided to crawl around the small vicinity around the pond. He felt the stones jabbing his knees again and decided that this hunt would probably be short lived. He slowly moved around occasionally lifting one of his hands to slide it against a plant of some sort; as if he was trying to decipher if he could eat it by the way it felt. He continued to crawl delicately around for a while until he felt a small pinch on his lower back. He whirled his head around, to find a small creature, which in some ways resembled his own form. This creature that was crudely trying to hide it?s burnt brown body behind a wispy plant. Karl stared at this strange creature as it decided to throw another pebble at Karl. Now Karl was getting upset and in a quick but painful gesture he flipped himself around so he was facing this new creature. Seeing that Karl had not been fooled by it?s plant camouflage, the creature crept out from behind it?s hiding place and stood in front of Karl. Karl was quite puzzled by this creature. He could not tell it?s emotions. It seemed to be sneering at him, but he felt a benevolence radiating from it also. This creature had the same body structure as Karl, but it very different from the mirror image Karl remembered. This creature had a rich burnt skin while Karl?s skin was a pale as the moon. This creature was also larger in size from Karl. It?s hair was the color charcoal and was smooth and straight. It was unruly and unkempt as was the rest of it. Dirt encrusted it?s fingernails and a dark shadow of dirt outlined it?s entire body. Around it?s waist it wore a small piece of an animals skin. It continued to stare at him with that strange happy sneer and then began to cough and gasp while still sneering. He saw the same amusement in it?s eyes so Karl knew it was not hostile, but he could not understand the meaning of these actions.

While contemplating this happy sneer, Karl Ward was interrupted by the sound of quick crashings in the woods. These fluctuating sounds were moving closer and closer to Karl and the creature. Karl became slightly nervous for this was all confusing him. Two more of these creatures stepped out of the thick green border and stopped in their tracks when the saw Karl. Karl stared right back at them as he knelt in his awkward knee hurting position. These other two creatures also had brown burnt skin and charcoal covered hair. They even wore an animal skin like the pebble-throwing creature. They stared at him and began to make these sounds to each other, which Karl couldn?t comprehend. He stared at their mouths watching them move up and down and form different shapes and listened to the strange noises which these shapes made. They then began making the sounds in the direction of the first creature and to Karl?s astonishment, the happy sneering creature made these unusual sounds back. The other two looked at Karl and then looked back at the first creature. They sighed and grew calm. They also began to sneer and make cough and gasping noises. This helped Karl to relax, because he could tell that the other two creatures were not angry, so Karl was not in danger. Then, to Karl?s amazement all three of them left. Karl sat down and began to play with a leaf. He did not know what those three burnt skin creatures were, he was confused. He crawled over to the thick dark pond and looked at the image of the human he had become. He had become very dirty like those two creatures and his skin had turned slightly red. He leaned closer and closer to the pool of water in front of him and then he placed his right hand on the water slowly letting it ripple and undulate. He let the water envelop his hand and watched it slowly sink below the surface. He peered into the murky water and watched little insects skittering left and right through the water. He saw orange and silvery fish streaming past his hand through the water. He pulled back his hand from the water and lay down on his back. He closed his eyes and listened to the sounds of the jungle around him. He smiled to himself as a light wind playfully tugged at his wisps of hair. Then the crashing noises came back, except these noises were much louder. He opened his eyes just in time to see five burnt creatures throwing a thick straw net over him. Startled, Karl reached up and grabbed at the thick straw with his hands thrashing left and right trying vigorously to pull this course net off of himself. He began yelping and bouncing around as these burnt creatures picked him up in this net and began to carry him. The course ropes cut and burned into his naked skin and the sun jutting in and out from behind trees hurt his eyes. He continued yelping quieter now. But he had stopped physically resisting them. He watched how they moved on their feet with their hands free in the air. He also listened to them make sounds to each other as the towed them toward their destination. He sat and daydreamed about jumping back out of the liquid silver mirror and becoming a platypus again, but Karl knew that this was not possible.

The burnt creatures stopped walking and began making louder and louder sounds. He could see more of these creatures walking toward him. He was now scared again. All of these burnt creatures frightened him. He began yelping again, but the mass of burnt creatures still moved closer and closer. He kicked against the unyielding net. Trying one last time to escape this horror, but there was no use. The burnt creatures carrying him dropped him on the floor and he slowly found his way out of the net. All of the gathered burnt creatures stepped back and gasped as he tried to stand as the burnt creatures were. He pushed himself up with his hands and stood on his feet for five seconds when he wobbled and fell. He sat there on the ground looking around at them confused and scared. They stared back at him with the same look of confusion in their eyes. Finally one very large burnt creature picked him up and carried him toward a large wooden hut. It smelled of wood, charcoal, and oils. The large burnt creature set him down on a soft smooth place that was covered with animal furs and smelled also of oils and slightly of dirt. He looked down at it and rubbed his hands up and down the smooth comforting surface. He looked back up at the creature and the creature stared down at him and then quietly left the room. Karl lay there on this soft surface feeling his body molded into. He looked around the room and saw many different strange contraptions. One window high up on the wall caught his attention, he saw a tiny patch of blue sky gleaming through that small opening and it calmed him down. He stretched his arms and his legs and quickly fell asleep.

After a dreamless sleep another one of the burnt creatures awaked him. This creature was holding some sort of contraption and sitting on the edge of Karl?s soft mat. The creature handed the wooden contraption to Karl and he saw that inside there was some sort of liquid. The creature motioned for him to drink it and after some coaxing, he took a small sip of the liquid in side. It reminded him of the murky water of the pond, but sweeter and smoother. Lovely, the creature smiled at him and he smiled back at it. He began to feel that he would be happy here. Over the next few weeks he adapted to their atmosphere and began to conform to their ways. He could never really learn their language it seemed his brain could not catch up to the code. He began to understand gender and the distinction in between. He also began to become custom to their traditions and ways of the Aborigine culture, which is what this group was. He became content with his new lifestyle and even though he could not communicate with them he still became accustom to their seeming shrieks and cries that he now knew as words.

One day not far into the future of his first visit, he sat on to the top of a cliff next to their little village and watched the world around him. Little burnt children were bathing and splashing in the water. The moved like huge sparkly fish jumping and diving tumultuously through the water. He listening to them screams and giggles smiling to himself. He looked up into the sky and stared at the large blue mass. He watched huge white birds soar through the clouds and listened to their echoing cry. He looked down and across the huge gaping rainforest thick with lush green trees and life. He felt the wind flowing through his hair and felt totally at peace with the world around. He had not felt this way since he laid on his rock and stared up at the sun. He now realized the he was at peace with his New World as he had been in his Old World. He was content with this new life that had been given to him and know longer worried about what the future held.

Elin Anderson

Hons. World Lit. (7)

April 12, 1999

An Australian Platypus

Down in the depths of the Australian Rainforest. There is a small murky pond surrounded by thick green moist foliage. It sits in the center of a deep dense rainforest alive with the chirps and clicks of the animals of the forest. In that pond, on a small gray rock, there was a platypus by the name of Karl Ward. All day he lazily lay there on the sun warmed rock gazing up at the tree-shadowed sun. Karl the platypus had no worries. His small mind was filled with his own contentment and what surrounded him in this little sludgy pond. He laid there on his rock watching the different animals surrounding the small pond. He gazed aloofly at two kiwala bears slothfully chewing at shards of green moist grass. These kahwala bears also had their faces turned toward the sun warming themselves in its rays. Karl laid there; watching as a brightly colored gecko skirted toward the pond’s edge. It was a bright orange with little black specks. The gecko proceeded to immerse itself in the water and then slide out quickly; repeating this motion several times. Watching this gecko, Karl Ward the platypus realized he was hungry. He waded through the water searching as he always did for the little grubs, which stuck under the surface feeding on the algae accumulating on the top of the pond. He ate a few and then returned to his rock. He

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