He follows the sea king’s daughter

I should be doing something completely different but my mind is on an Irish legend I’m working up into a retelling. This is a poem that has come out of my procrastinations.

Winslow_Homer_-_Rocky_Coast_and_Gulls

A snow white gull she made him,

And he followed where she led

Across the waves until she plunged,

Come after me, she said.

In the watery realm of the sea king,

He had wealth of every kind,

And he forgot the earthly love

That he had left behind.

In a green sea cave she laid him down

And whispered her honeyed words

That made him forget the sun and moon

And the spring song of the birds.

Until he raised his eyes to the shallows

Where the sun lit up the day

And sent to the deep green sea cave

A single golden ray.

Gold as his loved one’s flowing hair,

Cold silvered his heart with frost,

And all the tears in the ocean

Could not bring back what he had lost.

Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

11 thoughts on “He follows the sea king’s daughter”

      1. There are good sea people and not so good ones. I know some cultures have merpeople who are basically unpleasant and dislike humans. Then there are the legends of sea creatures that escort the souls of the dead home, seals and dolphins in particular. The Irish sea god is an inoffensive character compared with say Poseidon. Maybe in your neck of the woods there are more nasty sea people than nice ones 🙂

  1. I love this sea myth. It has the feel of Hans Christian Andersen in places. I never got out to take my pictures. It seems nothing ever goes as planned. I’m glad you stopped, and took the time to follow your muse. This is a lovely story.

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