Wednesday Jan 8
7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Kiss the Water is a sensual, hypnotic and haunting movie, weaving seamlessly between cinematic documentary and hand-painted animation–much the same way Megan Boyd twirled bits of colorful fur and exotic feathers round a tiny, sharp metal hook.
Megan Boyd was not a pretty woman. She dressed like a man on top, wore a jacket and tie over a tweed skirt below. She cut her own hair. She did not fit in well with others, left school at an early age–and learned the craft of fly dressing from an old river warden who had her unravel finished flies and rewind them onto smaller and smaller hooks, over and over until she knew the patterns by heart. All she wanted to do, it seemed, was to make flies. They were everything she was not–seductive, graceful, pretty.
As an adult, she lived almost completely alone, in a small cottage staring out over the North Sea, in far northern Scotland. She had no electricity, no running water or telephone. During the war years, she worked as a volunteer coast guard, scanning the dark waters at night from small concrete bunkers and listening to the blips of sonar. All she had, really was the constant spinning of her hands and the view from her window…like a cloistered maiden in a fairy tale, longing for something.
It is easy enough to conflate Megan’s endless staring with her waiting for the mighty Atlantic salmon, the king of fish, to make its way home from the sea. Salmon swim from the Brora and the Helmsdale, the two rivers that straddled Megan’s home, travel north and west and north again, past Iceland and Greenland, gorging themselves on krill, fighting of countless predators, and then return to the same river, the exact tributaries where they were born–an odyssey unto itself. And even more strangely, salmon do all their eating in the ocean and do not eat when they return to fresh water. They come back with a singular purpose: to find love, to mate.