Water

On storm-tossed coasts, a young girl lived,

Lost in misery.

It drove her to the water’s edge,

Bearing these items three:

A bud of rose, an egg of blue,

A spool of sewing thread.

She took a breath and took a step

And brine closed o’er her head.

 

The water folk, they found her fast,

Drawn by the rose’s scent.

She bartered it for passage safe,

And off her escort went.

They led her past the sandy coast,

Down where the kelp beds furl.

They took her to the castle deep

With halls of gold and pearl.

 

The gate keeper, he barred her path,

And would not let her in

For she was daughter of the drylands

And no aquatic kin.

She offered him the egg of blue,

Which thing he’d never seen

So he let her with such wonders

Within to meet the Queen.

 

The Ocean Queen with coral crown

Welcomed her to her court

But bade her leave the watery depths

Back to the humans’ port.

The girl gave her the spool of thread,

A tribute to the Queen,

But the royal mer just smiled

With kindly eyes of green.

 

“A bud of rose, an egg of blue,

A spool of sewing thread.

You offer us mementos of

The very world you’ve fled.

You won’t find what you look for here,

For all the world is bound:

Above, beneath, and in between,

Lives are built, not found.”

 

And so the girl returned again

To step upon the shore

She left her gifts within the sea

And sought for something more:

Instead of rose, a bloom of hope,

A bud’s blind reach for spring;

Instead of eggs, a new life gained,

With joy in each small thing;

 

 

Instead of thread, the ties that bind

People heart to heart.

And so she slowly learned the things

The Queen knew from the start-

The love she sought so far and wide

Was not beneath the waves

She only had to learn that one

Received just what one gave.

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