I squinted at the starless sky, humbled,
Once again, by the immensity of creation.
Billows of mist rose from distant depths,
Eddying over the land as musty reminders
Of yesterday’s blood and carnage, a testament
To the unchanging, callous law of nature.
With faraway chasms rumbling overnight,
How incessantly the earth had trembled
Throughout the eternity of agony I had endured
In my first—and, I swore, my last—childbirth.
Although the horizon palely glimmered,
The unpunctual sun was scarcely expected
To grace my age-old ancestral residence
Leeward of this bleak and barren sierra,
As it had never done so since my mother’s time.
I for sure had waited all my life for this moment
To glimpse at these sweet, tiny faces—which,
Thankfully, did resemble mine—
Despite the fact I could not recall
How and when it exactly happened,
Nor who the father of these little bastards was.
Now that my labour was over, my strength was spent;
I had kept my faith, I had run my race,
And the time of my departure was at hand.
“Farewell, my children,” I pleaded. “Mother must go,
For sweet, eternal peace awaits my soul
From where the thunders roar and summon.”
I, a worm at the foot of a feline’s fang,
Who presently leaped into the unknown chasms,
Would soon join my mighty host as one.
Then, for many, many a worm-year after,
I tumbled through unseeable oceans and worlds,
Until my flesh slowly dissolved in purgatory,
When an amoeba emerged from my ruptured guts.
“O, my lord, my lord!”
With pseudopods stretched out in pious prostration,
The wretched thing cried out to me,
“My ears had heard of you,
But now my eyes have seen you!”
Inspired from the Yiddish proverb, “To a worm in a horseradish, the whole world is a horseradish,” I came up with this thought experiment today, which, I suspect, might turn out as equally agreeable—or, rather, disagreeable—to the atheistic and theological alike. I hope none would mistake my playful allusions for blasphemous gestures; if anything, the fable, though peppered with references familiar to evangelicals, is to convey the bizarreness of colliding dissonant worldviews, which neither the evangelisers nor the evangelised should ever uncompromisingly ignore. Either way, one is also free to toss my intended context away altogether and view the story through the lenses of, for examples, the slumbering big cat’s, Zhuangzi’s, and so on.
Photo Courtesy: ibtimes.co.uk