I went and stood on the dock
And tossed a rock
A smooth, flat stone
I let it go with sprite
And it skipped joyfully on the water
And then it sank
A tiny fish saw it fall
And wondered at a thing that should be down
Coming from up
The flat stone swayed slightly
Side to side in the current
Until it came to rest in the sandy bottom
The shiny sand popped playfully
Up and around the stone and resettled
Covering part of the stone
The tiny fish saw that the stone
Was like any other to its right or left.
Had they all come from up?
Then the tiny fish had a big thought
That it had never had before
It wondered as to its own origin.
Did I come from up, too
And what is up, after all?
And the little fish felt unsettled.
It swam to the stone to investigate
Not knowing what it looked for
And it wondered why is there a stone at all?
And why is there a little fish
Worrying about the stone that came from up?
Neither the joyful stone nor playful sand would answer.
So then the little fish swam up
To see where the stone had begun to fall.
Its eyes breached the water just barely.
Over and over again it exerted itself
To go up and see into the heaven
But it could not understand what it saw.
Nothing in the up made sense
To the tiny little fish
No matter how long or hard it looked.
The up was blurry and bright
And full of objects that had no words
And its very matter was foreign.
The little fish was dismayed
At its failure to understand the up
And regretted wondering about the stone.
So the tiny fish went back to the down
And tried to forget its wonder
And its big thought it had never had before.
It thought perhaps it was not for little fish
To understand the up
Or to know why little fish and stones were.
Then night came and the tiny fish
Found its place to be still until the light returned.
And it wondered if there was a why at all.
In the dark it couldn’t really see the stone
Or the sand, or even the water.
But it knew that all these things were there.
Maybe the up was like the dark
Thought the little fish
It just obscured what was always there
Little fish’s heart lightened with the idea
That it didn’t need to see in the dark
Or understand the up to know something.
Gradually the water became light
Along with the tiny fish’s heart
And it felt joyful like the stone
And it felt playful like the sand, too
Because an even bigger thought had
Come to the tiny little fish.
There are some things I know
Because I was meant to know them
And I can look inside or outside and know them.
There are some things I have no words for
And that I can never describe
But they are still real.
On the dock I came again at dawn
And saw a little fish swimming
Happily against the stream
And unknowingly in that instant
I shared a thought with the tiny fish,
A big or tiny thought about God.
And we both were happy.