The Ten Commandments of Fly Fishing
The prophet Geoff has just
returned from the mountains with two stone tablets.
While he was there a huge rush of wind parted the ominous
clouds. Down came a giant finger in a shaft of light,
etching into the slabs of stone.
A booming voice commanded
him, saying " These are the ten commandments of
fly fishing….now go forth and multiply" or
words to that effect! We have brought these commandments
to you exclusively. Here is what is writ in stone.
1/ Thou shalt
never drop thy shadow on the water. Seek
ye the south bank in the morning. Seek ye the bend that
puts the shadow on the bank and not on the water. Seek
ye the ways of the skulker, the sneaker, dissembler
of shadows on the water.
2/ Thou shalt
not move suddenly lest ye shall spook the fish by movement.
Fishes live in moving environments with eyes that train
to detect movement against the background. Spook and
ye shalt not catch.
3/ Thou shalt
screen thyself with foliage green. Seek
ye the camo screen of leaf and branch. Leave not yourself
openly seen to the fish if it is possible to otherwise
break up your shape and outline. This is when the fish
shall reveal themselves on beat, whence you are not
known to them.
4/ Thou shalt
not expose thyself. Avoid ye the silhouette
upon the sky whereby at low level fish can look upon
the sky and see a human outline. Furthermore ye shalt
be arrested, raincoat and all.
5/ Thou shalt
not lay the line, nor the leader nor even they tippet
across the fishes gaze. Cast ye not the
shadow of the line across waters wherein lies the fish.
6/ Thou shalt
not false cast with monotony. Remember
that the fly must be on the water in order to catch
7/ Thou shalt
not covet thy fishing partner's wife's ass,
nor his wife's goat nor her other features such as ginger
hackles, fly reels or other covetous objects of desire!
8/ Thou shalt
not reveal to the world the Holy Grail. Mankind
has sought the perfect fly that always catches fish.
We know you have it so to reveal it would render the
fly box to contain only one, thus ruining my day.
9/ Thou shalt
not drag fish upon the bank but rather
carefully handle gently without removing from the water.
To harvest fish is against the holy law.
10/ Thou shalt
not drag the fly upon the water. Drag is
an abomination. The Sodom and Gomorrah of fly fishing.
Mend thy ways and thy line, for evil is the way of drag.
Cast the line with a stop and drop but drag you must
Thus spoke the piscator
grande to his prophet Geoffrey, who finding his idolatrous
congregation worshipping the unworthy graven images
of loch style, glo bugs and boobies, smite the stones
upon the earth.