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In the beginning

there was a whale in a jar,

content with very little:

size of the emptiness,

size of the jar,

the cold stiff hug of glass.

He would wile away the nothingness

and enjoy the feeling he got from breathing

in and out.

But eventually something cracked.


In a single moment of clairvoyance,

the Whale conceived of ocean.

Dissatisfaction sparked, the Whale

moaned and tossed – beleaguered by his

glass confinement.

Discontentment gave birth to ambition

and the Whale began to swell.


The jar then snapped and fell away.

The Whale fell away as well

for millions of year through strata by strata

of petrified darkness. He felt defeated.

He couldn’t be sure but he thought he might be growing.

It then occurred to the Whale to give voice to want.


“Ocean,” he called out, and splash

boomed the water.


“Hunger,” said the Whale, and his mouth

was filled with krill.


“Fun,” said the Whale, and the ocean

alight with creatures.


That was good enough for Whale

for a long time, a long time.


But it wore off and the old ennui returned.


“Love,” said the Whale, his voice heavy

with self pity.


And there beside him swam his very-joy.

They felt warm inside.

But soon there was not enough krill for both

and she died.


“Anger,” said the Whale, and volcanoes

vomiting liquid smoke piled up land

until it broke through the water.


Whale tried to find something he could hate

amongst the multitude of creatures

but he could not, he could not.


“Enemy,” said the Whale, and Man

appeared on land, crafting boats.


Something struck the Whale’s flank.


“Pain,” he yelped

but it couldn’t surmount the absence of his warmth.


It was no use, the hate. No use.

The Whale felt defeated and bumped the ship

gently, in resingnation.

A jar toppled overboard and plunged into the ocean.

Whale followed it down like a funeral procession

until the jar came to nestle in a submarine crag.


My, had he swollen.


How visceral the lure of this jar was to the Whale

but for all he did he could not fit inside.


“Justice,” he howled, and the Whale

gently died.