where sky and water meet, where the waves grow sweet

I finished The Chronicles of Narnia (by CS Lewis) way back in primary school and enjoyed the series thoroughly. My favourite book out of the septology has always been The Voyage of the Dawn Treader – I felt that it was a great metaphor for a journey of self-discovery. In that book, Reepicheep, leader of the Talking Mice, reveals that a Dryad once sang a prophecy (which went on to affect his whole life) over his cradle:

Where sky and water meet,
Where the waves grow sweet,
Doubt not, Reepicheep,
To find all you seek,
There is the utter East.

And his eventual fate? It’s one of the best and most moving bits of the book:

No one in that boat doubted that they were seeing beyond the End of the World into Aslan’s country.

At that moment, with a crunch, the boat ran aground. The water was too shallow now even for it. “This,” said Reepicheep, “is where I go on alone.”

They did not even try to stop him, for everything now felt as if it had been fated or had happened before. They helped him to lower his little coracle. Then he took off his sword (“I shall need it no more,” he said) and flung it far away across the lilied sea. Where it fell it stood upright with the hilt above the surface. Then he bade them good-bye, trying to be sad for their sakes; but he was quivering with happiness. Lucy, for the first and last time, did what she had always wanted to do, taking him in her arms and caressing him. Then hastily he got into his coracle and took his paddle, and the current caught it and away he went, very black against the lilies. But no lilies grew on the wave; it was a smooth green slope. The coracle went more and more quickly, and beautifully it rushed up the wave’s side. For one split second they saw its shape and Reepicheep’s on the very top. Then it vanished, and since that moment no one can truly claim to have seen Reepicheep the Mouse. But my belief is that he came safe to Aslan’s country and is alive there to this day.

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