McElligot’s Pool

When I was a kid (don’t roll your eyes…I pinky promise I’m not going to tell you I walked uphill to school both ways)…I had certain books that I would check out over and over again from the library.  Even as I got into 5thgrade, I would slyly check out McElligot’s Pool by Dr. Seuss and try to hide it under a ‘big’ book so no one else would see it and laugh at me.

I LOVED this book!  I never tired of the story…and especially the pictures!  They were so insanely inventive and sparked the fires of my imagination.  I loved the eskimo fish, the fish that climbed up the waterfall, the beautiful feathery fish, the swordfish that needed another fish to carry his snout because it was so long, and well…I loved basically every fish imagined in this book.

To me, this story proved that anything was possible…if you just believed, like that little boy did as he fished in that little puddle of water.   He sat there waiting for a fish to bite…and when told that he’d never catch anything but old trash…he wasn’t afraid to disagree.  In his mind, the whole ocean was available in that small fishing hole.  It could happen.

I love the picture in the book near the end that shows the fishing hole connected to a tiny underground tunnel that goes miles under cities and towns until it reaches the ocean.   The little boy’s line and hook have traveled all the way out there and all the fish in the ocean are surrounding it and talking about it.

I think life is like that.

Sometimes our life might seem mundane and unassuming…kind of like the boy’s fishing hole.  We might think we don’t make a difference in the whole realm of things…or think our contributions in life are kind of insignificant compared to the ocean of possibilities we see in others.  And I’ll let you in on a truth…ON OUR OWN, we actually are like that small piece of nothing fishing hole.

But if we make the connection with God…then He can bring a whole ocean of possibilities to us.   What that boy imagined is actually a reality.  I LOVE children’s books.

When I believe in God and allow Him to direct my life, then unthinkable possibilities can happen if I just take hold of my rod and cast out in faith, believing God will bring me so many fish I don’t know what to do with them all—just like Peter.

If you haven’t read McElligot’s Pool by Dr. Seuss, borrow it from your library or buy your own copy to read over and over again.  The pictures are magical…and the story is priceless.   C. S. Lewis said,

“A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.”

I think this book is timeless.   I was a little embarrassed to read it as an older elementary student…but now as an adult, I’m proud to shout:   I LOVE THIS BOOK!!!  Hope you do too!


8 thoughts on “McElligot’s Pool

  1. Your prompt got me goin’! I hopped right across the hallway to my school library and checked out the book. It’s the first time I’ve ever read it. Oh, I love it too . . . .the whimsy of possibility!
    I used to spin made up stories for my kids —-about the little people who must live in the small holes we found while hiking in the forest. I think they sort of believed me. :o)

    • Glad you liked it! Made up stories are the best! Have you written yours down? I saw the cutest idea on another blog where the girl made a book of all her dad’s stories he told them growing up. Then she illustrated it and bound it for everyone for Christmas.

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  3. i love Dr. Seuss!! But somehow managed to miss this one… will be buying this on my next book shopping, which is coming up soon 😉 i like how you drew the relationship to life & God – so very true!

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