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Gayle C. Krause lives in a cliffside lodge in the Pocono Mountains with a view of New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania with her husband and first reader and critiquer. She writes picture books, MG, and YA novels and is a member of SCBWI, and the 12x12 Online Picture Book Challenge.

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I wrote this poem several years ago after spending several days on a beach in Vieques, Puerto Rico collecting magnificent specimens of multi-colored sea glass.
The Mermaid’s Tears

A Poem…

Banished to the bottom of the sea for all eternity
for saving her beloved sea captain from a terrible storm,
a heart-broken mermaid cried tears of sadness,
which changed color and washed up on shorelines
across the world as “sea glass.”
For centuries mariners and beachcombers
have called this phenomenon “mermaid’s tears.”

– from The Legend of the Mermaid’s Tears


One dark, storm-ravaged night,
with ripping sails and mast,
a schooner sought out safety.
but its die of fate was cast.

A mermaid at its side
looked like a ghostly spectre.
She’d weathered many crossings
as the sea captain’s protector.

The ship heeled in the wind,
The captain lost his hold.
He tumbled in the raging sea
His ship was tossed and rolled.

The mermaid calmed the wind
and tamed the waves above.
She saved the life of the man
she had grown to love.

For disobeying Neptune
she was banished to the depths
where fated for eternity
she missed her love, and wept.

Forever forbidden
to seek the world of men,
her gleaming tears will rise
until she sees her love again.