By a German Poet
The other day,
I went to the sea
And asked the fish,
"Do you know who made the ocean and you in it, and for what?"
The fish gave me a puzzled look and said,
“I don’t know and I don’t care as to who made the ocean
And put me in it and for what.
Ho ha! I don't like such questions.
I have no time. Can’t you see how busy I am?
I have to run for food continuously
And watch myself day and night
That no one catch me or eat me alive.
Man! You can’t imagine how hard is life.
No, no. I have no time for such questions.
Why don’t you go and ask some man?
Over there, you see that man?
He does nothing but catch fish all day.
I bet he has time.
And by the way, I have heard it said,
Man has a mind with which to think.
You see, I am just a fish,
A poor animal.
I have no mind.
So use your brain.
Go ask the man and leave me alone.”
I went to the man and asked him,
“Sir, do you know who made this world,
The earth, the moon, the star, the sky above,
And the universe beyond
Floating in time and space.
Who began it all?
And put man in it?
There must be some purpose
And man must see His Maker?”
The man got up from his slumber
And shouted at me angrily,
“Get away from here.
Go get lost somewhere.
With all your questions,
You frightened my fish away!
What do I care?
What good is there in such useless questions?
What difference does it make
As to who made it all
And put man here?
And as regards the purpose,
What a silly question between you and me!
What’s there in it for me?
Can’t you see how busy I am?
I have no time.
You know how hard is life?
Or no one ever told you
About the rising prices,
The scandals of heron and aids,
The rising flood of pollution and crimes?
The hell they cry about in churches
May be far out there
But the one we have ourselves made
Is right down here!
With a thousand things to worry about,
I can hardly sleep
And on top of all this
Here come you with your foolish questions!
Go! Get lost!
And think yourself all such thoughts
But leave me alone.
I have no time.”
The man went back to sleep.
The fish went away.
The ocean kept on rolling.
It was getting dark on the deep.
I came back home.
What could I do?
But somehow or the other
The thought keeps on coming back
Again and again
That man has fallen to the level of a fish!
Or even lower!
What a fall it is, my countrymen!
How sad it is that a few are left
Who have the time and can still think
About such questions.
Let’s make a pause and think like men
While we are here.
For no one knows when the call may come
To depart from here.
Forever and ever.
Let’s find some time to think of the One
Who made it all and put us here.
His door is open and He is very near
For everyone who seeks Him.