But these were broken again by the light toes of hundreds of gay fowl softly feathering the sea, alternate with their fitful flight; and like to some flag-staff rising from the painted hull of an argosy, the tall but shattered pole of a recent lance projected from the white whale's back; and at intervals one of the cloud of soft-toed fowls hovering, and to and fro skimming
like a canopy over the fish, silently perched and rocked on this pole, the long tail feathers streaming like pennons.
Little pleasure steamers, black with people, are coming and going all the time; and everywhere one sees young girls and young men paddling about in fanciful rowboats, or skimming
along by the help of sails when there is any wind.
Undulating hills were changed to valleys, undulating valleys (with a solitary storm-bird sometimes skimming
through them) were lifted up to hills; masses of water shivered and shook the beach with a booming sound; every shape tumultuously rolled on, as soon as made, to change its shape and place, and beat another shape and place away; the ideal shore on the horizon, with its towers and buildings, rose and fell; the clouds fell fast and thick; I seemed to see a rending and upheaving of all nature.
Here the Slaughterer and the Lily bade each other farewell, while Galazi watched, and presently the Wolf saw Umslopogaas return as one who is heavy at heart, and caught sight of the Lily skimming
across the plain lightly like a swallow.
And presently all these birds came down close, skimming
over the water and the land; and the night-sky was left clear above, and the moon shone as before.
I was not a hundred yards from her when the wind came again in a clap; she filled on the port tack and was off again, stooping and skimming
like a swallow.
At this moment the door of the house opened, and a large plate came skimming
out, straight at the Footman's head: it just grazed his nose, and broke to pieces against one of the trees behind him.
I have said already," said the Trifaldi, "that it is with a peg, by turning which to one side or the other the knight who rides him makes him go as he pleases, either through the upper air, or skimming
and almost sweeping the earth, or else in that middle course that is sought and followed in all well-regulated proceedings.
Making his fast behind mine I started my engine, and skimming
over the edge of the roof I dove down into the streets of the city far below the plane usually occupied by the air patrol.
When the breeze came skimming
the earth the sledge seemed to be lifted off the ground by its sails.
As Dantes (his eyes turned in the direction of the Chateau d'If) uttered this prayer, he saw off the farther point of the Island of Pomegue a small vessel with lateen sail skimming
the sea like a gull in search of prey; and with his sailor's eye he knew it to be a Genoese tartan.
In reality, she was a true balancelle, with two short masts raking forward and two curved yards, each as long as her hull; a true child of the Latin lake, with a spread of two enormous sails resembling the pointed wings on a sea-bird's slender body, and herself, like a bird indeed, skimming
rather than sailing the seas.