I Am No "Little Mermaid"

For years, I have inhabited that small rock in the middle of the sea. Every dawn, I sink softly into the welcoming sea where laughing waves gently hold me. I keep gaily racing all day long with dolphins, playing hide-and-seek with crabs, and swimming alone for far away spots hoping the long distance would lighten up my load. When night enfolds the scene around me, a compassionate bright moon shines for me alone, sending its beams to linger freely among the charming enchants I softly sings in words that no creature on land or in sea understands.

Recently, I have been visited by humans; men with smiling eyes and stretched hands. Some court me with irresistible verses about my beauty and charms, while others keep staring at me not believing that I truly exist. They all end up inviting me to their boats with a promise of love and warmth. I look deep in their eyes trying to see my future but it is very foggy that I get dizzy. Shall I leave my rock, my safe rock? Shall I abandon the vast sea to be eternally imprisoned on land? I refrain from leaving my kingdom and sink deep in the sea escaping from the passionate calls. A few times I decided to take the risk and experience the light I am promised. Once I start moving, I am asked to sacrifice my tail. How could they ask me to give away my beautiful, shiny, blue tail?! A pair of frail legs are offered in return?! Could grace be replaced with chains?! Could swiftness be replaced with fragility?! My tail is not the only sacrifice I am asked to make, my voice is another oblation I have to give for "a future full of love" as they say. "I will speak for you, love" I hear it as an answer to my astonished question "How would I speak?"

My graceful tail and enchanting voice are the price I have to pay for a promise of love? Why do I have to change? I frown and say with a loud, firm voice, "I am no 'Little Mermaid'". I will always keep my tail and voice. I would rather sing for mute pearls safely kept in silent shells than eternally listening to someone else's voice wooing me.

I turn my face in resentment and wait until the boatmen give up and leave. Now, after many visits, I think of every one of them. I lovingly pat my tail thanking my good fortune for the beauty I am endowed with. I return to my habit of racing with dolphins in the morning and singing at night on a harp that I once found in the seabed. I am glad I am happy, cold and safe.



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