(04 October 1943 / Germany)

Mermaid?

I know that things were getting out of hand,
that men with guns were following your trail,
and that you had to leave your occupied homeland.
The day you left your card came in the morning mail.
They chased you slowly, so your brother said,
to make the most of their impending catch.
I wish that, in the summer camp then, that we had
spent much more time together. We, the perfect match.
So now I'm left to grieve behind my Iron Curtain.
You are so far, I only have your shirt.
Although you say that you are (almost) pretty certain
that it will fall, when will I stop to hurt?
I know you could not risk to take me.
You didn't want to have me caught and shot.
If you had come that day to me to make me
come with you on your journey ...you did not.
I thought you could not be without me, H!
Now I will try to cry so many tears,
that rivers will start flowing from my cage,
they'll take me down the valley of your fears.
And if you're waiting there to hold me,
I'll come out like a mermaid without tail.
I wish that you, on that day would have told me
your secret plans of actually setting sail.
But if you've found another little darling
to warm your stubbly cheeks on autumn nights.
I'll understand, you will not hear me snarling,
I'll slip back in and you'll have your delights.

And, when you, someday see a lake of tears,
so out of place in regions of your home,
you'll know that it contains our deepest fears.
And be assured it's where my soul does roam.
Forget you? No, you left me your tattoo,
inside my veins your blood is freely flowing.
And when I dream, deep in my tear lake about you,
I only see your blue eyes - always glowing.

So farewell now, my youthful, handsome man,
though I must tell you of a tiny change of fate:
To cry so many tears to make a river, no one can,
I have been told this by my new and handsome mate.

by Herbert Nehrlich

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