I plugged the hole with my bright red wellies, The water kept pouring in. My boat leaked, waves beating from the sea, I prayed for the eye of the storm. Still, the sun broke. An eye winked above, Its giant lashes combed my back and seated me in the dory. Calm, relaxed, I started to paddle ashore. I could see the clouds travelling The eye following, Keeping watch. A smile, rippling with each passing row. Smack! The smile faded. Did I hit a rock? Had I landed on the shore? A giant flipper rose. Stern, a mermaid was staring back at me. She braided her hair and tossed it over her shoulder toward me. I reached and tied it in. She whipped her tail and flipped over. Capsized, I swam face to face with the mermaid underwater. I could see the sky in her eyes. She reached out her hand and stole my tear, Held in her palm, admired its sparkle. Then with one soft breath, she blew it into the ocean. Bubbles, bursting, came fast toward me. The mermaid disappeared into the darkness. A bubble circled and carried forward. On the surface, clinging to the side of the broken dory The fog lifted, And a cod came by to say hi. “Character is everything,” he whispered. “Shut up, Cod and kiss me.” “By, you’re a real Newfie.” Salty and sweet.