"Amphibian Goddess" By Alice Dolphin

Dear woman

Maybe like me you see other woman

As smaller than they are

As less than

As creatures made of stick and strings

A twiggy mass, you wonder how they walk

And this is because you see yourself as less than

Because you’ve been taught to be the victim

To sit this one out sweet cheeks

Or let someone else do it

Lest you reveal your ignorance


But you do not need your mother’s Styrofoam fertility lessons

You do not need to dress the eggs in lace and ribbons

When you can dive headfirst into the ocean


You see, the Sea is your teacher

Of everything fluid

And flowing

The menstrual blood of the world

Mother Earth’s amniotic sac

Life sustaining liquid


But you have been told

To shuffle on dry land alone

Till your webbed toes

And fingers crack

And your silver scales flake off


Because the waves will drown us

Worries your sister

Because you’re not strong enough

Tosses off your brother


But you have been swept under twice and twice again by the big waves

And you don’t drown

You just lose a breath

Like a beat

And the discover the new rhythm of water breathing


But the worries and the judgments weasel you out of the water

Back on land


Where your vulva threatens to get lippy

To push out of its Nylon encasing

And you fear you won’t be fit for the beach

Fear they will send you back for any errant hair,

Say go home and take care of that


Or you could Lift

The heavy grey curtain

Where there is another beach

And everyone is swimming




You could join

Instead of peeking through the grommets at it wishing


You have never been afraid to step into the ocean


Water Being

But fears ferret you back

To the hot gritty land

To old stories of man

Is better than woman


So wet your scales

And wiggle your waffling toes

Do not bow in submission to the waves

But swim through them like

An electric current

Like a wave yourself

Like a selkie

Or siren

Not evil

Not seeking man

Just an underwater breather

And an air breather



Amphibian Goddess

Slipping between the worlds


Alice Dolphin is a writer from Edmonton, Alberta Canada.

"I am someone who loves to dabble and explore different arts. Poetry empowers me. It is the way I speak to and from my heart."

On Her Work:

"This poem was inspired by a series of dreams I had. In my dreams I am constantly seeking validation from males and yet I know more and more I can let go of that. I can embrace being a woman and love that fluid flowing part of myself."

On Female Creators:

"So we don't lose ourselves. So we don't kid ourselves and wind up doing something that doesn't light us up. So we can find the way to what does light us up. So we can follow our joy even when we are expressing sorrow."

Connect With Alice: