Why the Sky is Blue

Nathan Cauley

       The ocean loved himself. He loved the way he flowed and waved and spun around. But the ocean was sad. He could not see himself. He was too wide and too deep to ever know what he looked like.

       He would hear from everyone around him how handsome and majestic he appeared. The trees, the birds, and the mountains would tell him how brilliant was his surface, how vast were his borders, and how deep were all his colors. But he could only imagine.

       One day the mountains declared to the ocean that when the sun shines most powerfully at the peak of the day, his colors and features shimmered and gleamed so brightly that if the sun shown any brighter, his image would hang in the air above his waters for a moment for him to see.

       The ocean could not believe what he heard, and he desired all the more to have his image high and lifted above the earth so that he could catch a glimpse of what he looked like.

       So, he spoke with the sun, who gave off such great light for all the earth to experience, but who traveled in shapeless darkness across the sky. He explained how the mountains had told him how brilliantly he reflects the sun’s light, and how if the sun were to shine bright enough, his image would leap off his surface and hang in the air long enough for him to see.

       The sun adored the ocean, always appreciating how well he reflected her light and how handsome he always looked. So, the sun agreed to help him.

       The ocean watched as the sun gathered all her power and all her might, and at once shown with such a great burst of light that the world had never seen before.

       The light struck the earth with so great a force that the ground trembled. The mountains quaked, the trees smoldered, and the birds hid their faces from the blinding light.

       But the ocean, ever so deep and so vast, absorbed the radiant blast, and then released it. The image of the ocean leaped into the air. But instead of hanging in the air, the image soared higher and higher, all the way until it met the dark sky. The image traveled with such a force that it fixed itself upon the sky, exalted high for all to see.

       The ocean could finally see himself. His brilliant surface, his vast borders, and all his deep colors were on display for him to gaze upon forever. And the ocean was no longer sad.

Contributor's Note

Nathan Cauley is a Computer Science major with a peculiar love for writing. Tolkien, Rowling, and Mull are some of his favorite authors and greatest inspirations. In addition to writing, he loves to code, run, act, and avoid running into walls. Nathan would like to personally thank his parents, Michael and Wendy, for their long-standing support for his writing career.