I have worked on the Trumpeter Swan Restoration Project for two years and with exuberance, have witnessed the joy in numerous people’s faces as they grasp the magnificent white birds in their arms and help release them back into the forever wild wetlands of the Blackfoot Watershed. Until recently, I had never held one in my arms. Last Wednesday, I held trumpeter swan in my arms with all of its downy softness smooth against my arms and neck. I was the one feeling the swan’s graceful power and eventual surrender as he wrapped his neck around mine and rested his head gently on top of my head. I was the one so taken by this creature that it would forever inspire me. It was one of the most touching moments of my life, that feeling of being a part of something so wonderful, so much larger that yourself and to hold it in your arms. I have heard it described as a magical experience, to hold a swan. I have found no better way to describe this once-in-a-lifetime experience. For the rest of my life I will remember the day I held #5A6 in my arms as he captured my heart.