So for my astronomy class, we have to do some projects. Tonight I did one where I take some stars on a piece of paper, connect them to make a picture (constellation), name it and write a story about why it is a constellation. My constellation is of a flying pig. Here's my story:
The Constellation Volatilis Porcine
Everyone has heard the phrase “when pigs fly.” It’s a shorthand way of simply saying never. Well, this is the story of a pig who does fly, every night above our heads in the stars.
Long ago, in a far away kingdom, there was a little pig named York. Every day, York would walk down to the pond and watch the swans and ducks fly around. Oh how York wished that he, too, could fly. He asked one of the ducks if he could borrow her wings for a day. She responded with a haughty look and said,
“My wings were never meant to carry anyone quite as fat as you, pig. You’ll never be able to fly.”
And with that she flapped her mighty wings and sailed away to land gracefully on the water.
Discouraged, York wandered away from the pond wondering how he could lose some of his baby fat so that he could fly like the ducks that lived in the pond. But as he thought about it more, he began to consider the swans. The swans were so much bigger than the ducks, surely the swan’s wings would be big and strong enough to lift a stout little pig like himself, York thought. Buoyed by this thought, he trotted back to the pond and called out to one of the swans.
“Hello” he called “I was wondering if perhaps I would be able to borrow your wings for a bit so I could take a spin in the air like you?”
“You? Fly?” mocked the big swan. “You know, you’re not exactly built for it. You’re much too chunky around the middle, your legs would surely get in the way of your wings as you flew. No pig, you are meant to walk on the ground; you leave the flying to us of the avian persuasion.”
And with that he too, swam gracefully away leaving York once more all alone on the side of the pond.
“Oh woe is me,” cried York. “I will never be able to fly. The swan is right, I am much to round ‘bout the middle of me. No matter how big and powerful my wings were I would never be able to get this bulk off the ground.”
Unbeknownst to York, a little mouse named Seymour was listening to his lament. As it turned out, this was no ordinary mouse. This mouse had lived in the home of a great sorcerer and knew all kinds of magic. Seymour called kindly up to York,
“Oh pig, you wish to fly, do you?”
“Who said that?” called York, looking all around.
“I did, down here” responded Seymour.
“Yes.” York answered, surprised when he saw who was talking to him. “But I don’t think there is anything I can do about it. I am much too round to fly and none of the ducks or swans will lend me wings. I am destined to walk on the ground the rest of my life.”
“I can change that, if you’d like” offered the mouse.
“You can?” York was incredulous. “How?”
“I know some magic spells, taught to me by a great magician. I know some that can help you with your flight plight.” Seymour offered generously.
“Really?” York was genuinely curious now. A spell that could make him fly? “What can I do?”
“Come with me, I will give you a list of ingredients that you will need to get for me in order to make the potion that will give you wings.” With that, Seymour darted off through the grass toward his burrow with York trotting excitedly behind him.
When they finally reached the mouse’s burrow, Seymour found his magic book of spells and started copying out the list of ingredients for York. There were a lot of them and some were very hard to find. Others, York would have to travel great distances to find. But pigs are very good at finding things, especially when they want them very much. And York wanted very much to be able to fly like the birds that lived on the farm pond. So he started out to find the ingredients that very day so he would be able to fly as soon as possible. He searched high and low, near and far for everything on the list Seymour had given him. He braved frightful perils and waded through mires untouched by any pig since.
Three months later, York had found all the ingredients to the potion which would give him wings.
“How long until it’s ready?” York asked Seymour somewhat impatiently.
“It will take about a month to brew the potion properly. If it is not brewed properly you will end up with a duck’s tail instead of his wings, so it is very important that you do not disrupt me in this process.”
Pigs are not very patient. So for the entire month that Seymour was working on the potion, York paced back and forth in front of the burrow daydreaming of what it would be like when he could finally fly.
Finally, the potion was ready. Seymour brought it ceremoniously out of his burrow on a moonless night with the stars shining brightly overhead. He gave it to York who drank it down solemnly. Then he waited, and waited. After a few moments, two huge snowy white wings burst from York’s shoulders. He flapped them experimentally.
“Do you think they’ll hold me up?” He asked Seymour, unsure.
“York, look at your girth, it has lessened in these past four months.” Seymour pointed out. Sure enough, all the trekking and pacing York had done for these wings and greatly altered his weight and he was now trim enough to fly, no belly to get in the way of his new wings.
He ran around the farmyard, snorting happily as loud as he could, flapping his new wings excitedly. Just as the other animals came out to see what all the ruckus was, York gave his new wings one more powerful flap and whoosh he was off in the air, flying!
You may say that you have never seen a flying pig, but York flew and he flies today. After that very first liftoff, York never came back down. He flew so long and high that he flew right up into the stars on that cloudless night. That is why you can find him now, exulting in his first flight which will never end.