Anybody who is an entrepreneur is a person who essentially has impaired judgment. The odds of success are zilch. This valley is loaded to the gills with a whole lot of totally insane people who honest to God believe that they can be the next Bill Gates or the next Scott McNealy. And that is genuinely stupid.
Underwater, bubbles erupted before my eyes as a swift hand snatched my arm and pulled me to the surface. I gasped for air, coughing and gagging at the amount of water I sucked into my lungs by pure shock. What was up with me and breathing in water? I needed to grow some gills or something.
the mangrove killfish, lives in South American and southern US coastal swamps that can either dry up or become so toxic that the fish has to find refuge in the mud or by flipping and jumping across land. Amazingly, its skin and gills change so the killfish can breathe air and survive out of the water for as long as ten weeks.
From its fountains In the mountains, Its rills and its gills; Through moss and through brake, It runs and it creeps For awhile till it sleeps In its own little Lake. And thence at departing, Awakening and starting, It runs through the reeds And away it proceeds, Through meadow and glade, In sun and in shade, And through the wood-shelter, Among crags in its flurry, Helter-skelter, Hurry-scurry.
"Mine ain't a selfish affection, you know," said Mr. Toots, in the confidence engendered by his having been a witness of the Captain's tenderness. "It's the sort of thing with me, Captain Gills, that if I could be run over - or - or trampled upon - or - or thrown off a very high place -or anything of that sort - for Miss Dombey's sake, it would be the most delightful thing that could happen to me."
Why it is that animals, instead of developing in a simple and straightforward way, undergo in the course of their growth a series of complicated changes, during which they often acquire organs which have no function, and which, after remaining visible for a short time, disappear without leaving a trace ... To the Darwinian, the explanation of such facts is obvious. The stage when the tadpole breathes by gills is a repetition of the stage when the ancestors of the frog had not advanced in the scale of development beyond a fish.
Francis Maitland Balfour
Let us suppose that an ichthyologist is exploring the life of the ocean. He casts a net into the water and brings up a fishy assortment. Surveying his catch, he proceeds in the usual manner of a scientist to systematize what it reveals. He arrives at two generalizations: (1) No sea-creature is less than two inches long. (2) All sea-creatures have gills. These are both true of his catch, and he assumes tentatively that they will remain true however often he repeats it.
to love life, to love it even when you have no stomach for it and everything you've held dear crumbles like burnt paper in your hands, your throat filled with the silt of it. When grief sits with you, its tropical heat thickening the air, heavy as water more fit for gills than lungs; when grief weights you like your own flesh only more of it, an obesity of grief, you think, How can a body withstand this? Then you hold life like a face between your palms, a plain face, no charming smile, no violet eyes, and you say, yes, I will take you I will love you, again.
Something that had been a single cell, a cluster of cells, a little sac of tissue, a kind of worm, a potential fish with gills, stirred in her womb and would one day become a man--a grown man, suffering and enjoying, loving and hating, thinking, remembering, imagining. And what had been a blob of jelly within her body would invent a god and worship; what had been a kind of fish would create, and, having created, would become the battleground of disputing good and evil; what had blindly lived in her as a parasitic worm would look at the stars, would listen to music, would read poetry.
What is it about the relationship of a mother that can heal or hurt us? Her womb is the first landscape we inhabit. It is here we learn to respond - to move, to listen, to be nourished and grow. In her body we grow to be human as our tails disappear and our gills turn to lungs. Our maternal environment is perfectly safe - dark, warm, and wet. It is a residency inside the Feminine. When we outgrow our mother's body, our cramps become her own. We move. She labors. Our body turns upside down in hers as we journey through the birth canal. She pushes in pain. We emerge, a head. She pushes one more time, and we slide out like a fish. Slapped on the back by the doctor, we breath. The umbilical cord is cut - not at our request. Separation is immediate. A mother reclaims her body, for her own life. Not ours. Minutes old, our first death is our own birth.
Terry Tempest Williams
It is the simple things that are in the ocean. People think that simple things are on the seashore, like seashells. But seashells are just illusions of the things that once used to live inside of them, that are back in the sea! They are dead things, and dead things are not simple things. Living things are simple things, things like love. People think that love isn't simple, but that's because they are on the seashore; but when you are a mermaid, when you have gills, when you need to be in the ocean; love is simple. It's about being beside someone and staying there. And then sharing your souls. What's natural to a mermaid, isn't natural to a person. But I want everyone to be a mermaid. And if they can't, at least they can know what a mermaid is like. We live with the things that are alive.
C. JoyBell C.
More wine for me, pour me some more!" "You smart girl, I knew you're a smart girl, just teasing... ' Faces turn red, the dark earth blood is rising. They wink at Pelka, wink at the host: "He knows his goods!" The women feel the buttons constricting them - they undo one, another, a third. By twos the guests go outside to get some air. "Well, my dear guests, are you soaked to the gills? Eh? And now-to dance! Get lively!" The table and the chairs vanish. The middle of the room is empty. Ivan the Monk jumps out of his hole, a tambourine in his hands: "Tim-ta-a-am! Tim-ta-a-am!" 'Eh-hey!" the redhead suddenly snatches the tambourine and sweeps off, tapping wildly in a circle. Eyes closed: a white sleepless sun-a white night on the meadow-white columns of smoke swaying over fires... "Eh-ah!"-to whirl herself to death, to whirl out everything, to empty herself - nothing has ever been... Heavy boots are thumping on the floor, beards fly in the wind, the frock-coat tails go flying... hey, get going, faster, faster - a hundred versts an hour! ("The North")
Traveling on, the shaft of his light reached now a great, dully shining oblong, and he stopped, surprised. Then, through the glass sides, he saw bright shapes of fish wheel in schools down the opaque water, startled by the illumination. Coming at last, and so suddenly, on life like his own, Mr. Lecky moved closer. The fixed flood of his light enveloped these small fish dimly, glowed back on him. They came sliding, drifting, mouths in motion, gills rippling, up the light, against the glass. Their senseless round eyes stared at Mr. Lecky. Idling with great grace, the extravagant products of selective breeding - fringetails, Korean, calico - passed, swayed about, came languidly back. Moving faster, stub-finned, crop-tailed danios from the Malabar coast appeared, hovered, taking the light on their fat flanks, now spotted, now iridescent pearl or opal. Seeing so many of them, so eager and attentive, Mr. Lecky felt an unexpected compunction. He was their only proprietor; and soon, trapped unnaturally here in the big tank, they would starve to death. His light went back to a counter he had just passed, showing him again the half-noticed packages - food for birds and pet animals, food, too, for fish. Returning to the tank, his light found many of the fish still waiting, the rest rushing back. He went and took a package, tore the top off, and poured the contents onto the rectangle of open water. It would perhaps postpone the time when, having eaten each other, the sick remainder must die anyway.
James Gould Cozzens
The greatest mystery the universe offers is not life but size. Size encompasses life, and the Tower encompasses size. The child, who is most at home with wonder, says: Daddy, what is above the sky? And the father says: The darkness of space. The child: What is beyond space? The father: The galaxy. The child: Beyond the galaxy? The father: Another galaxy. The child: Beyond the other galaxies? The father: No one knows. You see? Size defeats us. For the fish, the lake in which he lives is the universe. What does the fish think when he is jerked up by the mouth through the silver limits of existence and into a new universe where the air drowns him and the light is blue madness? Where huge bipeds with no gills stuff it into a suffocating box and cover it with wet weeds to die? Or one might take the tip of the pencil and magnify it. One reaches the point where a stunning realization strikes home: The pencil tip is not solid; it is composed of atoms which whirl and revolve like a trillion demon planets. What seems solid to us is actually only a loose net held together by gravity. Viewed at their actual size, the distances between these atoms might become league, gulfs, aeons. The atoms themselves are composed of nuclei and revolving protons and electrons. One may step down further to subatomic particles. And then to what? Tachyons? Nothing? Of course not. Everything in the universe denies nothing; to suggest an ending is the one absurdity. If you fell outward to the limit of the universe, would you find a board fence and signs reading DEAD END? No. You might find something hard and rounded, as the chick must see the egg from the inside. And if you should peck through the shell (or find a door), what great and torrential light might shine through your opening at the end of space? Might you look through and discover our entire universe is but part of one atom on a blade of grass? Might you be forced to think that by burning a twig you incinerate an eternity of eternities? That existence rises not to one infinite but to an infinity of them?
And under the cicadas, deeper down that the longest taproot, between and beneath the rounded black rocks and slanting slabs of sandstone in the earth, ground water is creeping. Ground water seeps and slides, across and down, across and down, leaking from here to there, minutely at a rate of a mile a year. What a tug of waters goes on! There are flings and pulls in every direction at every moment. The world is a wild wrestle under the grass; earth shall be moved. What else is going on right this minute while ground water creeps under my feet? The galaxy is careening in a slow, muffled widening. If a million solar systems are born every hour, then surely hundreds burst into being as I shift my weight to the other elbow. The sun's surface is now exploding; other stars implode and vanish, heavy and black, out of sight. Meteorites are arcing to earth invisibly all day long. On the planet, the winds are blowing: the polar easterlies, the westerlies, the northeast and southeast trades. Somewhere, someone under full sail is becalmed, in the horse latitudes, in the doldrums; in the northland, a trapper is maddened, crazed, by the eerie scent of the chinook, the sweater, a wind that can melt two feet of snow in a day. The pampero blows, and the tramontane, and the Boro, sirocco, levanter, mistral. Lick a finger; feel the now. Spring is seeping north, towards me and away from me, at sixteen miles a day. Along estuary banks of tidal rivers all over the world, snails in black clusters like currants are gliding up and down the stems of reed and sedge, migrating every moment with the dip and swing of tides. Behind me, Tinker Mountain is eroding one thousandth of an inch a year. The sharks I saw are roving up and down the coast. If the sharks cease roving, if they still their twist and rest for a moment, they die. They need new water pushed into their gills; they need dance. Somewhere east of me, on another continent, it is sunset, and starlings in breathtaking bands are winding high in the sky to their evening roost. The mantis egg cases are tied to the mock-orange hedge; within each case, within each egg, cells elongate, narrow, and split; cells bubble and curve inward, align, harden or hollow or stretch. And where are you now?
A cloud in the sky suddenly lighted as if turned on by a switch; its reflection just as suddenly materialized on the water upstream, flat and floating, so that I couldn't see the creek bottom, or life in the water under the cloud. Downstream, away from the cloud on the water, water turtles smooth as beans were gliding down with the current. I didn't know whether to trace the progress of one turtle... or scan the mud bank in hope of seeing a muskrat, or follow the last of the swallows who caught at my heart and trailed it after them... But shadows spread, and deepened, and stayed. Things were going on. I couldn't see whether that sere rustle I heard was a distant rattlesnake, slit-eyed, or a nearby sparrow kicking at debris... Tremendous action roiled the water everywhere I looked, big action, inexplicable... At last I stared upstream where only the deepest violet remained of the cloud, a cloud so high its underbelly still glowed feeble color from a hidden sky lighted in turn by sun halfway to China. And out of that violet, a sudden enormous black body arced over the water. I saw only a cylindrical sleekness. Head and tail, if there was a head and tail, were both submerged in a cloud. I saw only one ebony fling, a headlong dive to darkness; then the waters closed and the lights went out. I walked home in a shivering daze, uphill and down. Later I lay open-mouthed in bed, my arms flung wide at my sides to steady the whirling darkness. At this latitude I'm spinning 836 miles an hour round the earth's axis; I often fancy I feel my sweeping fall as a breakneck arc like the dive of dolphins, and the hollow rushing of wind raises hair on my neck and the side of my face. In orbit around the sun I'm moving 64,800 miles an hour. The solar system as a whole, like a merry-go-round unhinged, spins, bobs, and blinks at the speed of 43,200 miles an hour along a course set east of Hercules. Someone has piped, and we are dancing a tarantella until the sweat pours. I open my eyes and I see dark, muscled forms curl out of water, with flapping gills and flattened eyes. I close my eyes and I see stars, deep stars giving way to deeper stars, deeper stars bowing to deepest stars at the crown on an infinite cone.