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Jonah, First Person Present

I have my marching orders.
My path is firmly set.
But the fear of risk and harm,
Fill me with regret.

Haven’t I worked long and hard?
This is the final straw.
Escaping threat of land life,
I sail into the maw
Of the ocean’s mammoth native,
Who, upon me, snaps his jaw.

Whale, big and hollow,
Like I am, only huge,
No rescuer can follow
Lest be swallowed by deluge.

I’m alone within the vasty deep,
Leviathan’s domain,
Moving far away from
Once comfortable terrain,
Alone and clothed in shadow,
But protected all the same.

The darkness isn’t friendly,
But it doesn’t pose a threat.
No stomach acid here,
I’m just dripping water-wet.

Neither warm nor chilly,
I sit in smallish cave,
In the deepest depths of time out,
Which could chasten or deprave,
Reminding of the way
A human mammal should behave.

I can’t sit still for too long,
And I don’t set well as food.
I’m not a tasty morsel,
And I wreck the large beast’s mood.

Soon the muscle tremors
Undulate and squeeze,
My visit nearly over,
I feel a final heave:
The monster vomits violently,
Forcing me to leave.

I toss and twirl in agony,
Confusion and dismay,
Not knowing which is up or down,
Or if it’s night or day.

Finally the swirling
Of the water’s feral flops
Push me toward the shoreline
As a sand and gravel mop,
Onto waiting dry land
Where my body rolls and stops.

Lesson learned? Be happy
With lung-friendly habitats.
Escaping from my duties
Won’t show where peace is at.

To leave is fine, but short-term,
A thoughtful getaway,
Not meant as a new life goal
Or a lasting place to stay,
But a pause to get me focused,

Then send me on my way.