Jerry The Fish who spoke in French
There was a fish named Jerry. He knew french. Jerry could do a lot of things. Things no one expected a fish could do. “He doesn’t have the muscle in his lips or a tongue to pronounce it, how could he possibly speak at all, let alone french?” I hear the criticism. But he doesn’t. He’s content knowing “je suis un poisson, je nage beaucoup, parce que je dans l’eau.” he tells me.
He likes to watch the sun set. “C’est belle Emily, je veux voie le monde.” But you’re a fish, Jerry I’m sorry you can only see what’s out your bowl. “Prenez-moi, s’il vous plait Emily s’il vous plaît.” He looks up at me pleading. “Apprendre anglais Jerry puis alors nous irons.” “Okay”, he responds, in english.
Jerry has many talents. He knows how to tell time. “5 o’clock Emily.” He tells me. Sometimes he gets shrimp. He doesn’t always know when, he doesn’t understand the holidays yet. He keeps track of my schedule, tells me when I have to go or work. I read to him.
“the blue book” he says. “I like…the blue ….blue book.” he tells me. He continues until he can read through a passage or so by himself. “but what does it mean Jerry? Why does he not miss his mother?” I ask him. “he doesn’t have feelings like we do. He’s different.” “different how?” “well…I just don’t know. I don’t know yet.” he replies. “Jerry” I tell him, “You know so much Jerry, but out here…” “Enseigne moi, Emily, s’il vous plaît” he interupts . “Oui Jerry, je vais. Je vais enseigner beaucoup pour toi.”
“Alors” he says, “Let’s go Emily. I know english now.” Okay, I reply. “Where should we go first?” I ask. “New York.”
We leave to New York. This place wasn’t meant for a fish like Jerry. But he loved it. “C’est Manhattan Bridge Jerry. C’est belle” I tell him. The sun sets. So many buildings to see, and so much to explore. “Look Emily Look! La belle femme! Elle est vert!” “Yes she is Jerry. Should we say hello?” I look to his excitement. He ‘ahs’ in amazement. “Bonjour! Hello!” We go to Liberty, Liberty island.
Jerry knows many things. He can tell you many stories of all the places he’s been too. Of all the places he wants to see. He’s a traveling fish. His world expands everyday.
Jerry is an old fish now. “Jerry do you remember when you would only speak french? When you told me you knew english, proved to me even, just to go across the country?” “Yes, I do.” He replied. He doesn’t swim around as much as he used to. He doesn’t talk as much either. His world has been shrinking, as does his desires. His scales not as radiant or bright. His fins not as strong or thick, he used to speak. He liked to prove people wrong.
“Pourquoi Emily?” “why what?” I respond. “Pourquoi” I look at him, so small and frail. I look at him with wonder. What does he have to say. “Pourquoi cesse-t-il?” he asks me. “Oh Jerry, it never does. It never really ends. No one will forget you Jerry. The fish that spoke when people said he couldn’t possibly.” He looks up to me. “No one will forget the fish that expanded his world beyond the bowl he was bound into.” He looks up, he turns to the window “c’est belle Emily, c’est tellement jolie.” He saw the world.