Mermaid Song (For Sophie)

from by Anna Vogelzang

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lyrics

you were living underwater
behind a smoke screen made of ink
you were just your father's daughter
flailing, trying desperate not to sink

you had learned how to be sweet
without knowing how to swim
found a mermaid at the beach
let her danger drag you in

a little sad, a little thrilled
a little stoned but even still
your heart will pull you to the coast
& you will build your sea glass house

you were writing water sonnets
out of steel and bone and shells
but you had never thought the hardest part
would be writing to yourself

but first you tried to learn to breathe
you made patchwork quilts from coral
and as you leaned how to receive
you started floating upwards

a little sad, a little thrilled
a little hard but even still
the currents pull you to the coast
& you will build your sea glass house

now you have found that grace can come
on the days when you have given up
and walking underneath the sun
is just as brave as swimming

& kindness rights a few small wrongs
& what is left is where you started from
but poems, waves, new lungs, or songs
are not a bad beginning

a little sad, a little thrilled
a little hurt but even still
this life will pull you to the coast
& you will build your sea glass house

a little sad, a little thrilled
a little hurt but even still
my heart will pull me to the coast
& i will build my sea glass house

credits

from CARTOGRAPHY, released March 1, 2009

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Anna Vogelzang Los Angeles, California

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