The Green Eyed Fish
Once, there was a small fish. For him, the pond was big. He swam with wild abandon. getting lost was not a concern for him, but an adventure. he knew he could get by with a little help from his friends.
On one such joy ride about water, he experience massive waves carrying him away without his consent. He was scared and confused. What had suddenly happened to this placid and serene lake? He asked as much to an elder saffron crab, by the edge of water. The crab pointed to a long floating creature. It had two arms moving forward and backward, thrusting water backwards which had caused the ripples that caught our fish by surprise. The rest of the body was amazingly still, except for its derrière, which bobbled a bit from time to time. It was a curious creature; it refused to swim below the water. He wondered how it survived outside of water all this while. Our lil fish was enamoured by it. To his astonishment though, at the bank another figure with four limbs and weird angular joins 'stepped out' of it.
He had seen one fish going inside another forever. He had seen a herd of smaller fishes feasting on a big one, which was rendered sans movement.
But he had never seen a creature coming out of another one, the bigger left dead still.
This mystical creature had jumped out of water and stationed itself by the bank on a stone. It smeared itself with ashes. The crab told him, the ashes were of a similar creature who had come there earlier. The crab told how these creatures come and sit there motionless for a long time only to send out bubbles of some sort high in the sky, from time to time. He told of their queer fascination with that one rock to sit on. He narrated how this particular creature had bludgeoned the head open of his predecessor. There were many rocks there, but they always fought for this one only. All wisdom led to waste, corporeal feast.
The fish was scared. Fear leads to awe; Awe to respect. He gingerly swam towards the alien creature. He tentatively looked at it sideways. He peeped out of water and opened his mouth to ask questions to it. But the creature caught it and threw it out of water. Our little fish was gasping for life and jumping with desperation. His little mouth was gaping huge with thirst for life.
The rock on which this was happening, had been a seat of these weird creatures for ages. It had grown smooth and slippery owing to its continued use. It just so happened that the lapping water on the rock made the creature slip and fall. And fall he did, right into the fish’s mouth. The fish couldn’t take it in for it was too big, and couldn’t get it out as well. They both rolled down with the creature’s weight back into water. At the bottom of the calm lake, the duo were struggling; the fish to get the creature out of his mouth, the creature for his life. Flailing limbs eventually stopped. The fish eventually found a way to eat up and gulp down the creature. The fish grew immensely with this diet. All of a sudden, it became the big fish of the pond.
The word had spread. Fish had eaten up the big alien creature. Rumours created legend; Legend lend him strength. He was feared. He was despised. People don’t like things that they can’t comprehend. How did he grow up this big, and why did they not? This irked him, alienated him, and made him angry.
He couldn’t recognise his earlier friends as they appeared much smaller now. They tried to come near to him. He ate them up. He ate up his family. He ate up the entire pond’s fishes and crabs and occasionally some ducks. He grew and grew and grew so much that he was now too big for the pond. Half of his body would now necessarily lie outside the water. So he would have to rotate himself to wet and breathe regularly. One can do it only so many times before asking the existential ‘for what’? A tear rolled down his round big eye. He was eating up the sand surrounding the lake to satiate his hunger. Eventually, it was the sand who claimed him. His scales turned stone. But his eyes forever remained moist. Little birds feasted on this water. There grew fungus and then eventually the eye turned green with vegetation.
Now he sits by the lake. Motionless. Trees grow on his back. Swallows nest in his eyes.
He makes a good photograph.