Voice of Reason

No one listens to the sea hag, even when they really, really should.

Sarah Lofgren
4 min readJun 2


The entrance to the cave was lined with rows of pointed teeth, giving it the appearance of a shark’s leering maw. Only a fool would enter that particular foreboding cavern, about which many songs had been sung—songs including words such as anguish, fester, scourge, and bewail.

The mermaid swam inside.

Upon entering she came face to face with a grotesque figure undulating in the murky water. Its eyes were sinkholes, devoid of light. Its mouth was rapacious and fitted with a crude implant that added even more teeth to its already plentiful score. Instead of fingers, the monster had wriggling tentacles, and, instead of a tail, a cloud of seaweed sprouted from beneath its torso and filled the underwater cavern.

“You must be the sea witch,” said the mermaid.

“I prefer sea hag, if you don’t mind,” replied the creature.

“Of course,” replied the mermaid, wondering if the monster was sizing her up as a potential entrée. When had her decision-making skills devolved into such complete recklessness?

But, she knew the answer to that question. It was all his fault. Him, magical him. The sandy-haired human had plunged into her life and transformed her theoretical plans for a life above the ocean into practical ones. Human men were WONDERFUL. They were so much better than the mermen she knew. Mermen were useless beings who wasted all their time on hunting and silly games. Try asking them how to launder a seashell bra—they wouldn’t have a clue.

“I’ve fallen in love,” she said.

“My condolences.” The sea hag swished her tentacles. “So, you’ve come here to ask me to lift the spell?”

“Certainly not. He’s wonderful and I wish to live with him forever and ever and ever and so on.”

“Why not try a week, first, and see how that goes?”

“I’ve never been as certain about anything. He’s the one for me. But, I am desolate, for he has legs and I do not. How can we be together, when we face such an impediment?”

“Does his home have a pool in the backyard?”



Sarah Lofgren

Engaged in inadvisable wordsmitheries and other creative acts. http://sarahlofgren.com