Current born, wave flung, tugged hugely by the whole might of ocean, the jelly fish drifts in the tidal abyss. The light shines through it and the dark enters it. Born, flung, tugged, from anywhere to anywhere. For in the deep sea there is no compass but nearer and farther, higher and lower. The jellyfish hangs and sways. Pulses move slight and quick within it as the vast diurnal pulses beat in the moon-driven sea. Hanging, swaying, pulsing; the most vulnerable and insubstantial creature; it has for its defense the violence and power of the whole ocean, to which it has entrusted its being, its going and its will. But here rise the stubborn continents; the shelves of gravel and the cliffs of rock break from water baldly into air. That dry, terrible outer space of radiance and instability where there is no support for life. And now, now the currents mislead and the waves betray, breaking their endless circle to leap up in loud foam against rock and air, breaking. What will the creature made all of sea-drift do on the dry sand of daylight? What will the mind do each morning, waking?
- Ursula K. Leguin from The Lathe of Heaven, 1971