Daily Archives: June 1, 2009

Before I Became a Mermaid

Before I became a mermaid I could play the piano.

Then one day I grew that tail
Smooth and taut like the skin of a quince

It grew faster than my breasts that swelled overnight
Limes one day. Mangos the next.

I shimmied to the creek
Slid down the bank next to mama’s mimosa tree and
Buried myself in the water with the crabs and croakers
Swapping the sweetness of my piano
For the silence that stretched from here to yonder.


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Filed under Poetry


wildI have plants in my garden that I don’t have names for. I saw a stalk that might be a Yucca this morning. It was leaning in the direction of the wild roses, almost hidden by the brambles next to the butterfly bush. Eden was wild. My dogs are wild. If I’d had children, they would  have been wild – like I was. Wild and free, but also frightened and ashamed. I was all those things, but I never realized I was good. I tried to tame my wild hair. Tame my dreams. Tame my desires. When I couldn’t do that, I just ran. I let my hair grown long and curly. I stopped looking into mirrors. I stopped looking back. Home disappeared. I disappeared. I was only a memory and my friends and family remembered a very different person than the one I became when I let myself be wild.  Fear was replaced by resignation and shame by autonomy that times became apathy. I became as invisible to the people around me as the wind. I became as transparent as water. One day flowed into the next. I drifted further and further away from what was safe and sane. I was truly wild and I could lie spread eagle in the rocks next to the Rio Grande and disappear.


Filed under Breadcrumbs, Nonfiction