Matthew Kirby


Reign, Characteristics of:

The snow goose's reign was characterized by blood.
The official emblem of the snow goose's blood reign was the image of the elegantly curved neck of the snow goose itself.
The adjective most frequently employed by the people to describe the neck of the snow goose was "perilous."
The snow goose exploited the people remorselessly.
The people made quilts with pictures of sea animals on them.
The quilts were a tradition of sorts in the lands controlled by the snow goose.
The people, however, no longer made the quilts using traditional means.

Common Eccentricities:

It was not uncommon for the snow goose to become furiously bored with the situation it had created.
It was not uncommon for the snow goose to stalk the streets of the lands it controlled, its perilous neck flashing white as it struck the life-blood from people of the land.
It was not uncommon for the snow goose to pluck whole shipments of newly constructed quilts from the docks and hurl them over the lip of the volcano.
It was not uncommon for the people who worked the docks from which the quilts were exported to get goose bumps upon sighting the perilous neck-flag of their savage ruler, the snow goose.
It was not uncommon, despite its frequent savagery and indiscretion, for the snow goose to receive tribute from foreign dignitaries.
It was not uncommon for foreign dignitaries, lured by sandy beaches and a thriving quilt-making culture, to make frequent voyages to the lands controlled by the snow goose.
It was not uncommon for the snow goose to host lavish dinner parties, attended by foreign dignitaries, at which feasting and reveling were the dominant modes of behavior.

Lands, Outstanding Geographic features of:

The volcano was a major landmark.
The lands controlled by the snow goose did not have any other outstanding geographic features so the volcano would have to suffice.
The volcano had been dormant for a long period of time but sometimes it sputtered.
The snow goose once tried to tell some foreign dignitaries at a dinner party that the reason the volcano sometimes sputtered was that it sometimes grew hungry and that the reason the snow goose sometimes hurled the quilts over the lip of the volcano was to appease the volcano and that, ultimately, the reason the volcano remained dormant was that the snow goose appeased it with the blankets.
The foreign dignitaries knew better than to follow this remark with any of their own remarks.
The night air swallowed up their indiscreet discretion.
The avenue or "leak" through which the people heard about the snow goose's remark was the porter's protege, who the snow goose would have surely slain if he hadn't believed him to be utterly deaf.

Generalizations Better Left Unmade:

No one can claim to know the whole story of the snow goose and the lands it controlled.
None of the borders of those lands continue to maintain the shape the snow goose had originally given them.
Not that anybody has ever heeded those borders anyway.
Never were there borders more flagrantly flouted than those borders.
Not in recent memory were there border-flouters of such dubious character and transparent purpose.
Nary a one of them, when apprehended, expressed the slightest degree of regret concerning their egregious misdeeds.
Nil, in the end, was the number of those blackguards spared punishment at the hands of the snow goose.

Recent Developments:

As of late, the snow goose is rumored to be hiding in a lean-to constructed of car doors in Birmingham.
As of late, the snow goose is rumored to be a broken old creature, filled to brim with regret for the blood that once characterized its reign
As of late, the snow goose is rumored to have taken up fishing, a sport at which it is rumored to be extremely unlucky.
The snow goose has seven grandchildren: Jen, the rain goose; Baba, the mist goose; Glen, the bluster goose; Todd, the goose of the north; Bing, the desert goose; Hershel, the grey goose and Emily—the only one rumored to have inherited the snow goose's perilous and lovely neck – the ice goose.
Emily, perilous Emily: She is the one the people are murmuring about.
Emily, fair Emily: Let not your birthright be your fate!
As of late, the snow goose is rumored to have been seen whistling, strutting about tunefully before its hut made of car doors in Birmingham, waiting for the late winter frosts to come and carry off its soul.


"The Snow Goose" was inspired by the CIA World Factbook, the author’s limited knowledge of third world dictators, and frequent contact with people who would be third world dictators but just haven't found their islands yet.