They stood at the root of the water’s edge,
staring into salty rings of white and vine,
Thinking of Rachel.
She died last year, when the tides were cold and weary.
They won’t go there.
It didn’t seem fair to still love something so beautiful
without knowing why.
Tattered lace and tiny fingers rest the delicate surface
that is creviced by time and wiser than yesterday.
But to love at all seemed to shift the clouds caught in current.
Everything is plagued by the shadows of memory and
smells of dusty orange peels.
Four slender hands fuse the curve of skinny hip bones
as a modicum of silence swallows the air
with shards of patterned sunlight.
“Don’t worry.” she said. “We’ll be mermaids when we grow up.”