Story from Iran: The Little Black Fish by Samad Behrangi

30 11 2009
It was the longest night of winter. At the bottom of the sea an old fish gathered together 12,000 of her children and grandchildren and began to tell them this story:
Once upon a time a little black fish lived with her mother in a small pool on the side of a mountain. Their home was below a black,moss-covered rock, under which they both slept at night. Little black fish longed to see the moonlight in her home but it never happened.
From early in the morning until the sun set, Little black fish swan around the pool with her mother. Sometimes they swam with other fish and played hide and seek in and out of small crevices. Little black fish was an only child; for of the 10,000 eggs which the mother had laid, only she had survived.
For several days the little fish had been deep in thought and had talked very little. She swam slowly behind her mother around the pond and did not play with the other fish. Her mother thought her child was sick and would soon be well. In fact, the black fish’s sickness was really something else!
Early one morning before the sun had risen, the little fish woke her mother and said: “Mother, I want to talk to you.”
Half-asleep, the mother responded: “Child, this isn’t the time to talk. Save your words for later. Go swimming ?”
“No, Mother! I can’t go swimming anymore. I must leave here.”
“Do you really have to leave ?”
“Yes, Mother, I must go.”
“Just a minute! Where do you want to go at this hour of the morning ?”
“I want to go see where the stream ends. You know, Mother, I’ve been wondering where the end of the stream is… I haven’t been able to think about anything else. I didn’t sleep a wink all night. At last, I decided to go and find where the stream ends. I want to know what’s happening in other places.”
The mother laughed – “When I was a child, I used to think a lot like that. But, my dear, a stream has no beginning and no end. That’s the way it is. The stream just flows and never goes anywhere.”
“But mother dear, isn’t it true that everything comes to an end ? Nights end, days end, weeks, months, years…”
“Forget this pretentious talk,” interrupted the mother – “Let’s go swimming. Now is the time to swim, not talk. “
“No, Mother, I’m tired of this swimming, I want to set out and see what’s happening elsewhere. Maybe you think someone taught me these ideas but believe me, I’ve had these thoughts for a long time. Of course, I’ve learned many things here and there. For instance, I know that when most fish get old, they complain about everything. I want to know if life is simply for circling around in a small place until you become old and nothing else, or is there another way to live in the world ?”

Continue reading the story here:

About Samad Behrangi

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