on the seashore lay the mermaid

on the seashore lay the mermaid,
each scale of hers a poem,
each flounder of her tail a mast for thoughts,
counting silent the grains of sand
swallowed with greed by the sea smelling like algae
and understanding in a glimpse
that the time when the fear of her song used to sway ships like the green waves
had set

on the seashore lay the mermaid,
each breeze of wind a pain,
each blink a sunrise,
enduring with love the death of the sailors tattooed on her arms,
knowing that, at the crossroads of shells, under her lessening body,
were still hiding seeds of stories and spores of dreams

on the seashore lay the mermaid,
each palm a cup for sleeping turtles,
each eye a bottomless whirl,
allowing the wonky sun to wither her shade like a leaf
and to mix it slowly in histories just as salty
as the driftwoods thrown by storms on the shore,
still humming, within their core, her song


© Liliana Negoi

originally written in Romanian

4 Responses to “on the seashore lay the mermaid”
  1. Poppy says:

    Wow, this blew me away! ♥

  2. yelena says:

    loved it so much Lily~

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