The Rime of the Midwinter Mermaids

by Kelly Jarvis

When white-bearded winter wanders through frozen seascapes
And stirs salt waters with his icy hands of death,
When his frigid breath blows across the frosted tips of waves,
And makes icebergs creak and moan with pain and grieving,
The midwinter mermaids return.

They rise, two by two, toward the misty moon-shine of the surface
To gulp the Arctic air which curls around emerald chunks of heaving ice.
They weave shimmering drops of crystal into their long, dark locks of hair,
To reflect the radiant beauty of the dancing Northern Lights
As they begin their symphony.

They sing of solemn seasonal stillness, lingering darkness, never-ending night,
And their voices haunt the sea fogs that tremble over the deep.
They sing of ceaseless seaborne secrets, a return of warmth and light,
And their glittering notes rise reverent to the red stained east
Where the sun is born again.

 Their frosty aria ebbs and flows like a tide in modulating key,
Pulling the paused earth back into the embrace of the endlessly moving sea.

© Copyright Kelly Jarvis

Kelly Jarvis (she/her) teaches writing, literature, and fairy tales at Central Connecticut State University, The University of Connecticut, and Tunxis Community College. Her previous work has appeared in Enchanted Conversation where she works as the Special Projects Writer. She lives with her husband and three sons who bring her on frequent trips to the shore to collect seashells and search for mermaids.

Read the Rest of the December Issue


2 thoughts on “The Rime of the Midwinter Mermaids

  1. Beautiful story. It makes me think of the beauty of the sea even in the cold of winter while thinking of the promise of brighter, warmer days ahead.


  2. Beautiful writing! Always thought of mermaids in the summer, but Midwinter Mermaids is a lovely adaptation!


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