The Octopus off Grand Cayman

by Corey Mesler

Once, while snorkeling off Grand
Cayman Island, I came face
to face with an octopus. Like some
ancient toad-god he sat on the
bottom of the bay, fixing me
with his wall-eyed stare. I was
speechless, awed. I floated
above him transfixed. He bore it
for as long as he could and
then, filling himself with air,
he shot off beyond me, disappearing
in stirred muck and murk. I
surfaced and the rest of the day was
only another day, the last one
on this honeymoon. We returned
to our new marriage and struggled
to stay face to face with each
other, giving up eventually, like
the octopus who thought he’d seen it all.

— from Juniper Volume 3, Issue 1