La Sirena


"I saw an arm and then another arm, as though someone had just awakened and was stretching," Ernesto said. "The body these arms belonged to unfolded itself and sat up, right there among the walruses. It was a woman. She was very beautiful. She had long dark hair that fell down over her front and back. I was very far away, but I was certain she had green eyes. Green like the sea, only it was as though her eyes were tiny green lights--lighthouse beacons. They seemed to go on and off, on and off. She looked at me and waved. I could not move! I could not cry out or wave or move. I could only look.”

“Did you see her tail?” Stefan asked.

“I could not see a tail or legs,” Ernesto said, “because the walruses blocked my view. Finally I was able to move and I raised my hand and waved. She smiled and picked up a ukulele and began playing it. I could hear the music. I turned and looked at my compaƱeros, but none of them had noticed. The boat moved away quickly and I could no longer see her. I never told the others because I did not want them to make fun of me. I thought of her for a long time.”

“Do you think she was really a mermaid?” Stefan asked.

Ernesto said, “This is what I decided: it is a very old world. And the sea is the oldest of all. Who knows what is true about such things and what is false. I will tell you this, though. I do not think she was trying to get me to jump into the sea or to take me away from anything or anyone. I do not think her being on the rocks had much to do with us. She found herself a beautiful spot amongst friends and she was satisfied with that.”

Lily clapped. “I like your mermaid!"

(This is a scene from Church of the Old Mermaids. The picture is something I painted about seven years ago just before we moved to this house. I've always wanted to see mermaids who weren't just these young women with bare breasts. For me, there was always something more about mermaids, something powerful and wonderful. When I thought mermaid, I thought goddess, but I rarely saw art that reflected this view. And I'm not an artist, but it was fun playing with the colors here. And seven years later, the Old Mermaids made their presences known in my imagination.)


Anonymous said...

I love your Siren painting. Let's hear it for non-traditional mermaids!

Kim Antieau said...


Anonymous said...

I am addicted to your stories about the Old Mermaids! I had a sneek peek at COTOM last week with Joanna and can barely contain myself until you get it published. As hard as it is for you to maintain two blogs, the old mermaids and their stories want to be told. As one of the eager listeners, I want you to know how much I love seeing new stories. I'm even begining to think of some of my own!!
But for now my main task is staying in deep waters under the Raging Storm here in the Northwest.

Sister DragonSong Mermaid

Kim Antieau said...

Thanks, Sister DragonSong Mermaid. I think I'm addicted, too. I just love writing them. Stay safe in the storm! It's already an interesting winter here in the Pacific Northwest, isn't it, and it's not even winter yet?