Catch and Release

Littie Boy Fishing
The little boy loved to fish.  The only problem was that he just couldn’t stand to hurt that poor fish hanging by his line with his hook in it’s mouth.
Oh, he knew alright that the name of the game was “catching” fish and, well how else were you supposed to do that but with a pole, line and-a hook.


Everyone would tell him; “Boy, it doesn’t matter cause those fish are not like people, they don’t really feel that hook there. After all, they are just, well, just fish,” implying that the fish  didn’t feel  the pain.

Yeah right, the boy thought, and that blood coming out of it’s mouth and gills was just some pink lemonade or something that fish drink.
One day  when the boy was fishing, he had a whole bunch of nibbles and bites with a few almost “gotcha’s”, but no real catches until, POW !  He had a hit that took his line running straight out across the lake. The boy didn’t even have time, or need, to hook him, the fish just ate the bait and hooked himself.
That boy was excited! He thought, please Lord, don’t let me lose this fish.
Well, the good Lord heard his prayer that day and sure enough, he fought that fish and fought that fish until he brought him right up close to shore to about only two feet of water. Very clear water. Water so clear that he could see that this was the biggest fish he had ever caught in his life, and this fish was caught. The boys hook was just through the giant fishes lower lip, just under the bone where it supposedly didn’t hurt much. A solid catch.
Then the boy found himself looking right into the eyes of the fish. It was just lying there, not struggling at all. He wasn’t hurt bad or anything and the boy couldn’t understand why he wasn’t putting up a fight to get free, especially in this shallow water.
It was then that he noticed the fish was looking straight back at him. Whoa! He never had that happen to him.  It was as if the fish was saying, you know, “okay, you got me now take me. Come on. Get me off of this hook and into your frying pan or mount me up on your bedroom wall somewhere. Maybe next to your signed Mickey Mantle bat or something”.
Then the boy saw the blood start to trickle out of the fishes mouth, but he wasn’t hurt badly, the boy thought.   Then he saw the fish starting to gasp for air, straining to get big gulps of air where there was none to be had.  Yet, still, in all of this, the fish was not struggling to get free but kept looking into the boys eyes.
The boy remembered the prayer he had said and it worked. That is, the good Lord saw to it that he didn’t lost the fish. He surely had him but, now what?
Release him, he heard a voice say. Release him. You have caught him now, release Him.
The little boy just knew this was God talking to him. He thought, hey maybe the fish is God, after all, he learned about the fishes and the loaves in Sunday school, didn’t he?
No. The fish was not God but he knew what he was going to do.
The boy reached down and held the un-struggling fish in his left hand then gently removed the hook from it’s mouth, which came out surprisingly easy.  
Expecting the fish to immediately swim off, the boy was startled to see the fish just slowly begin to swim around in the shallow water, all the time looking straight into the little boys eyes.
The boy felt a sense of calm about him almost like a feeling of peacefulness. The world was good again.  
He watched the fish take a last final look and it swam off.

The little boy collected his fishing gear, gathered up his stuff and headed for home.


~ by Vinnie on September 8, 2009.

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