Have you heard the one about the monk and the mermaid? I confess to having a soft spot in my heart for rhyming poetry, especially if it was written before 1900. How can I resist Pushkin’s sad tale of the old monk and his mortal temptation?
He looks; his heart is full of trouble,
Of fear he cannot quite explain;
He sees the waves rise more than double
And suddenly grow calm again.
Then, white as first snow of the highlands,
Light-footed as nocturnal shade,
There comes ashore and sits in silence
Upon the bank a naked maid.