When needing to retreat, Annie Dillard goes to Tinker Creek and immerses herself in nature. During one of these trips, she has a snippet of a revelation, which makes her see beauty and ugliness in harmony and see the world as meaningful; even though there is sorrow. In this passage, Dillard uses the symbolism of a maple key and similes to explain its descend as something beautiful, seeing the positive in the negative. When she is at Tinker Creek, she uses words like “lost, sunk” which shows the lack of understanding as she looks towards Tinker Mountain. All of a sudden, she sees what looks “like a Martian spaceship”. She uses a simile to describe what she sees as otherworldly or magical because a Martian spaceship is not from this world. She describes that “it flashed borrowed light like a propeller”. As the object is coming down, it brings with it “light” or a revelation. She goes on to portray it as “pirouetting and twirling”, words which are often associated with ballet and are viewed by most people as beautiful. Her experience with this beautiful, otherworldly object is a door that allows her to see this as part of the beauty in the world.
When the object falls, she finds it in the grass and she later identifies it as a simple maple key. Dillard identifies the key after describing her experience because she was unsure of what it was as it was falling but knew after had fallen. The maple key, which usually is in pairs falls single. She greets the maple with a simple