|Mother Ocean and three dolphins|
She will bowl you over!
Leave too many salt tears,
and the Voodoo women say,
she will pull you in
to join your salt with hers forever.
But you can cry to Yemaya!
Whate’er your sadness, large or small,
she pounds the shores ever again,
in rhythms as old as Earth,
waxing, waning, high tide, low tide,
sister of the moons, pulling as she pulls on our blood,
the other salt sea we carry within.
Whate’er your sadness, she pounds our shores
as though our misery were just another tortilla,
and she is huge, and warm, and she smiles very big,
and without knowing, we reach for her,
the salt sea rises and falls with her.
She rocks us in her huge arms, wherever we are,
around the world she rocks us to sleep,
high tide, low tide, dreaming of the moon,
minnows in her pockets.
June 24, 1995
Yemaya (Yemoja, Yemonja) is the Yoruba (Nigeria) Orisha or Goddess who represents the Ocean and all salt water. She is a huge Mother figure of great compassion for all Her living beings. She is the center of worship in Brazil, Cuba, New Orleans and many parts of Africa.
This poem is one of mine that has been chosen to appear in the We'Moon Datebook, a wonderful compilation of women's art and poetry, for the 2016 edition.