The holy messengers call her
A mermaid, a paragon of women,
Eyes devouring the maiden skin
Giving way to salmon flesh
Grown in the midst of mourning
Her drowned family underwater.
That which is strange and fractal
Like marine rainbows shiny with salt
Is annihilated–trial by air, suffocated lungs–
Then venerated–apocryphal saint.
This savage sea-wanderer,
The messengers think to themselves,
Saved at last, her coral-pink soul
Given a mud puddle in heaven,
Hybrid body buried in dry ground.
Maybe then she will sprout legs,
They think, thirstier than soil.
And maybe then, invasive land species,
We can nestle and nourish ourselves
Between her newfound limbs.