Sockeye Salmon spawning up the white river. Photo by Theresa Tillson

Up the River

Squamish, BC

The salmon are swimming up the river.

At Starvation Lake. We saw a snake in the water and the dog refused to continue swimming.

Pink salmon, my sister says, in a week they’ll be coho salmon.

It’s a strange sight.  Something I’ve always heard about.  I know that salmon swim up river to spawn and die.  But to watch them on this final march is something else.

Such strong bodies fighting the current.

Bodies turning mottled as they slowly eat themselves, and start decomposing on the way back to their birth place.

An endless line of fish.

All with one goal in mind.

Bodies starting to line the banks.

The dog is scared to go in the water.

Something strange is going on, and she doesn’t like it.

An inexhaustible march.  A courageous act built into their DNA.


About Natalie

Natalie Fisher is a dancer, teacher, silk aerialist, and choreographer. She is inspired by the wilderness. Her work involves finding the seam where her worlds of dance, aerials and the wilderness meet.

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