Meagan Graves

Consider the Jellyfish

Consider the jellyfish: a creature unspooled and
Floating in the first blood, the earth blood, the 
Sea. Consider the jellyfish and its tentacles, dancing 
Like ribbons or rope, waving with mindless grace as it 
Drifts directionless along currents deep within the 
Blue. Consider the jellyfish and the medusan sting 
Clinging to the tentacles’ ends, as much a shield as 
A weapon. Consider the jellyfish and its umbrella—
Mushroom cap that pulsates for heartbeat propulsion. 
Consider the jellyfish and that when we witness it, 
We feel the need to humanize and think that the
Cap must be its head. Consider the jellyfish and its
Mindlessness. Consider that the jellyfish still knows 
Something that we do not about the nature of being 
—About being nature, primal and simple and free. 
Consider God. Consider God, in heaven, floating atop 
Clouds made of cyclical water that reverts to the 
World neptunic. Consider God’s unknowability, God’s 
Mystery, God’s power and grace and silence. Consider 
The jellyfish. Consider the jellyfish and its longevity—
A time capsule to 700 million years ago even as the 
Rest of us transformed into a version distorted 
And strange. Consider the jellyfish, unknowing and
Alien and exquisite, a remnant from life long since 
Dead. Consider the aquariums we stare at them in,
Swaying hypnotized and cryptic, and consider the fact
That we may be the ones trapped behind the glass.
Consider God. Consider the jellyfish. Consider that if 
There is a God, God and the jellyfish must be almost
The same. 

Meagan Graves is a writer from Portland, Oregon, and is the recipient of the 2022 Michael and Gail Gurian Writing Award for Poetry. Through poetry, prose, and playwriting, she explores the themes of home and connection. Meagan is currently completing a degree in English and Communication Studies at Gonzaga University.

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