Passion. Love. Deception. Heartbreak. Such are the themes of the Norse & Celtic legends of the selkies, also referred to as silkies or selchies. Originating in the northern Scotland isles, a selkie is a being who is a seal in the water, shedding their sealskin to become a human on land. My Irish relatives never really differentiated between selkies or mermaids, as they considered the myths basically the same story. If you have not heard it, there is a beautiful Shetland ballad, “The Great Silkie of Sule Skerry.” The band Solas covers a rendition in their song “The Grey Selchie.” Gorgeous and sad.
Come listen to a sensual, timeless narration of this poem by my friend Simon Howard on Twitter.