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A Mermaid Tail Story: Where are the Mermaids?

Writing is a way for me to relax and release energy. I express my feelings in songs or poetry.

Mermaids Lives in Rivers and the Sea

a-mermaid-tail-story-where-are-the-mermaids

Introduction

In the Niger Delta along the West African coastline of the Atlantic Ocean, there are a people called the Wakirike Ijaws or Okrikans, whose basic occupation in the distant past before the arrival of the European missionaries and explorers is fishing. I am proud to be a Wakirike Ijaw. Fishing appeals to me, and three of my boys. I specialized in the catching of sardines, mullet, and tilapia fish among others.

In this region, cultural beliefs hold strong. Mermaids or water spirits exist. Locally called Mami Water in Nigeria or Owu in the Okrika Ijaw language. Those spirits are malevolent and at times appear turbulent in character. They abode in the creeks and promontory turns. Some types are like the fairy spirits in English, European, and Oriental culture. Here the mermaids appear benevolent, luring ignorant men into their abode for marriage or coitus.

Fishermen have one or more encounter with these beings positive or negative, influencing life and destiny. At times, the scenario appears as folklore. Persons who regularly disturb their abodes are usually dealt with. One fisherman was traced to his house on returning from a fishing trip and was beaten to death behind closed doors, by these malevolent beings, leaving his dependent wife a widower.

They warned the man to desist from threading on their terrain again, and again. But he persists, and that costs him his life.

It is a warning sign that when a fisherman ventured too far on the high sea in course of a fishing expenditure, he should fish where there are human beings or settlement. Birds have even known to warn men to desist from fishing at certain location on the high sea. Those who dare resist the warning paid dearly. This man falls into the group.

Fishermen reflected much on unusual happenings during a fishing trip. These are at times translate into stories, songs, folklore, myths, and legend.

The Poem: Where are the Mermaids?

I stand at the River Bank

And, I look beyond my fondest dreams.

I take a look to catch a glimpse of the fair mermaid.

My Spirit reflect on the water

And, I thought and wonder beyond my dreams.

No, that’s not the mermaid

That’s neither me, flesh nor blood.

Childishly, I throw a pebble.

A ripple the water

The mermaid appearing weird!?

Distorted head, body, arm, and…

Stillness.

The mermaid comes back to form?

My Spirit comes back to beauty!

Where are all the mermaids gone?

Not a single mermaid to see?

Mermaid Story

Mermaids May Appear in a Disco Hub as a Human

a-mermaid-tail-story-where-are-the-mermaids

Have You Seen Mermaids?

Sighting a mermaid is not a common phenomenon. Since being spirits, they have their world a marine kingdom which is a bar to human beings. Why do mermaids appear unaware of the presence of a human is hard to fathom. Immediately these beings realize you have sighted them, they disappeared. They seek a very quiet location for appearance, playing masquerades, games, tricks, and dancing. Mermaids have been pin-point as the harbinger of the cowry shell games. Many like me dislike these game because any time it was started, money disappeared in the home mysteriously. At times they change into human form and intermingled with human beings to achieve a diabolic mission. Mariners or seafarers sees them afar off on a voyage, but on approaching the location their manifests disappearance. The thing is that they had a secret to protect from the mundane world.

“Owu Nini, Mingi Nini”

The phrase in the Okrika dialect means ever raiding the promontory and the creeks. Mermaids usually habit the seas and rivers. As human beings began to civilize along the river banks and creeks, and form towns or villages inland, it seems the mermaids began to raid or colonized the precinct or frontiers of the settlers. Why this is so is to corrupt the human civilization. The word “owu” means a diabolic spirit. And, it can be view in more than one aspect, positive or negative. Nonetheless, it is associated with a demonic being.

Remember the first creative experience of the human species? The serpent was human-like in all appearance. His committing canal knowledge with Eve led to her downfall and that of the serpent. So we should understand that mermaids seek to mingle with humans just to corrupt the human race.

The initial “O” in Owu is pronounced as in the English O. The “wu” as in English “who.” Mingi means water. The “min” is pronounced as in English mint, without saying the “t.” While the “gi” as in giving.

Mermaids have created millions of years ago before the first human beings appear, though from the belly button to the head, they resemble human beings. Some mermaids have scales on their body as on fishes, and they are exemptions in certain cases. The scales seem to be tiny hair covering on the body as noted in human beings.

A Water Front

Human beings civilized here, making towns and villages.

Human beings civilized here, making towns and villages.

My Encounter

I remember I returned late from work some 15 years ago. I took my fishing net to the River Bank to get some Tilapia because my wife has need of them to make a nice and delicious pot of soup. It was night time. I swirl my fishing net into the river. I tried to pull it out minutes later but it got stuck by an obstacle at the bed of the River. I dive in with a piece of loose cloth around my waist to release the net. A hand somehow massage my thigh, and the cloth got loose. I came out naked from the river.

There was a big stump of a tree on the bed of the river. The tree was cut down during a dredging work. The location was an abode of mermaids, and fishes usually appear significantly there. Nowadays, the location is a waste dump, and as the beautiful and fair mermaids disappeared completely, it is goodbye to fishing at the creek.

Igi Konbo: A Fisher Man

Fishing appeals to me.

Fishing appeals to me.

Okrika Water Front

Okrika waterfront is a big fishing port from time immemorially. After being dredged was noted for drowning human beings. Boys and girls were warned not to go swimming. But some persisted certainly got snatched by the demonic beings. I remembered one of my extended family member who got drown and died at the Water Front.

At the promontory turn of the waterfront is another location colonized by mermaids. I once went fishing at low tide with my son. At the first swirl of the fishing net, the net catch “multitudes of fishes” and we could not release all the fishes into the canoe. The night is approaching, and we carried the net home still tangled with fishes.

Mermaid Cult

The famous Wakirike Odumu festival was a mermaid cult. On a fishing expenditure long ago before the arrival of the first Christian Missionaries on the Wakirike (Okrika Island or kingdom), two Anyugu Biri fishermen were on a fishing trip within the vicinity of the crude oil off-loading jetty of the first Nigeria Petroleum Refinery Company. The fishers experienced serious turbulence on the high sea, and stir they canoe to the river's bank for safety. When the waves ceased, they appear some mermaids playing Boa constrictor masquerade. This the Wakirike people called “Odumu Owu,” Odumu masquerade or just Odumu.

The Odumu masquerade was played in the year 1977 during the world famous 2nd Black Festival of Arts and Culture staged in Nigeria. Another followed less than 20 years later on a minor scale due to a special chieftaincy installation. The Odumu festival seems to be the highest mermaid cult in the Wakirike or Okrika kingdom. It was postulated that the festival always comes about 20 years after appeasing the mermaid spirits. If the later gives the green light, it is a deal, otherwise, calamities follow the Island.

The Year on May 29, 1999, Nigeria opens its door with a new Presidential system of government to date. I do not know whether any special chieftaincy installation will warrant the display of the Odumu festival again.

A Boa Constrictor

The boa constrictor is a tool of the mermaid in masquerade display

The boa constrictor is a tool of the mermaid in masquerade display

Significant

Mermaids exist in all culture. They are no country that has not a story or lore about mermaids. You go to Europe, America, Africa, India, China, in fact, all the continent has a story to tell. Local ethnic names varied. In the whole of Nigeria, it is called Mami Water. These beings usually strike certain persons with illness. They cause ships or boats to sink when disturbed. I noted a location at a River Bank always steaming with very large and pinkish-colored Tilapia fish. A man attempted building a house there. I warned him: “owu omiye”- there are mermaids there, and he stubbornly builds without finishing it. The foundation fell! The building debris is still standing there. I last saw them in the year 2017. It is some 20 yards away from the location that I catch the multitude of fishes and my net nearly break.

Conclusion

Though mermaids may appear benevolent, it is a sign of deception. When a man breaks an agreement, he is dealt with or stricken with calamities, like a sickness. The type of games or masquerade they introduced seems innocent enough. But these captivate men into misfortune.

References

  1. Contemporary General Studies, by Professor J. D. Atemie and N. Onuobia (Eds), Uniport & Hercon Investment Ltd.
  2. The Cultural Heritages of the Wakirike (the Okrika) Peoples, by Chief E.D.W. Opuogulaya, CSS, Press, Port Harcourt.

3. Wikipedia mermaid

4. Mermaid real

5. Mermaids evidence



Comments

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on October 18, 2020:

Casey White, welcome visiting my page. Glad you enjoy the read. But whether you live all your life on a mountain, mermaids and their(male folk) or merman have had inhabit the moon! Merman are much prominent in the forest part of a country. I choice to write about mermaids because the part of my country where the beings manifest activities, is washed by the Atlantic Ocean, which befit them well. Thanks for the read and the comment.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on October 18, 2020:

Brenda, yes there is mermaid as well as merman. But not much is known about the later's activities, on my part of the country. The merman seems to inhabit the forest part of a country, althought certain few are marine base. So I concentrate on the part of my town where the experience speaks. Interestingly, both are diabolic, and so malvolent. But the mermaids seems to to be as a "weaker sex" at some degree. I will update this in my next edit. Thanks for the visit, and weighing.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on October 17, 2020:

Just a quick note...while on vacation recently in Delaware we saw statues & other gift items with Male Mermaids.

Never...ever, have I heard of that!

Your writing is good & I already commented on this one before...just wanted to toss that one out there.

Casey White from Tennessee on October 17, 2020:

This is overall a really interesting article. I've never really thought too much about mermaids. I've spent my life high up in the mountains far away from the ocean so not many mermaids here. I'm open to the possibility they exist. Underwater is a place humans can't explore fully so I know mysterious creatures exist there we don't know about. I never knew anything about Nigeria and beliefs about mermaids. Incredibly fascinating to read.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on July 27, 2020:

MGSingh, thanks for visiting. The comment you drop is insightful, thoughtful, and protudes I would say that mermaids really exists. Though very few persons has seen them with the 'naked-eyes." No one is seeing Jupiter, Uranus, Mars, Pluto, and Saturn with the eyes. But to those in the field of astronomy, these cosmic bodies are realities. Whether the uninitiated believe or not. God is spirit. Angels are spirits. Demons are spirits likewise. Unawarely, one at times come into encounter with these beings, which were not usually seen. One has experiened a thing or two with those beings. The mystery lingers on. Some persons dare take it that dreams do not exists. In all these, I opined the limiting factor is the mind. Blessings and much thanks.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on July 27, 2020:

MGSingh, thanks for visiting. The comment you drop is insightful, thoughtful, and protudes I would say that mermaids really exists. Though very few persons has seen them with the 'naked-eyes." No one is seeing Jupiter, Uranus, Mars, Pluto, and Saturn with the eyes. But to those in the field of astronomy, these cosmic bodies are realities. Whether the uninitiated believe or not. God is spirit. Angels are spirits. Demons are spirits likewise. Unawarely, one at times come into encounter with these beings, which were not usually seen. One has experiened a thing or two with those beings. The mystery lingers on. Some persons dare take it that dreams do not exists. In all these, I opined the limiting factor is the mind. Blessings and much thanks.

MG Singh emge from Singapore on July 27, 2020:

Mermaids are like the dream. Nobody has yet seen one but they make an interesting tale and help create a mystery.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on July 26, 2020:

Hi Dale, the question is this: have you intrude into thy special terrain? When you (unknowly?) do, then only then their dare deal with you. Hoping is useless. They like to be mostly at quete corners to practice they secrets. Many thanks.

Dale Anderson from The High Seas on July 26, 2020:

I live on a boat and have for many years. I'm a little shy to admit that every single day I look out at the water and keep hoping that I will see a mermaid.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on July 08, 2020:

Sisodia, I say yes. Read again the sub-topics: "My Encounter" and "Significance." This were real time experiemces. In fact, the whole story is based on reality, and not on myth or legend. The part of my world, called the Niger Delta, is washed by the Atlantic Occean. Hundreds of miles away, similiar incidence occured. Thanks.

Jyoti Sisodia from Bangalore on July 08, 2020:

This one is cool to read about mermaids but do you believe that mermaids still exits somewhere in this whole world?

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on July 06, 2020:

Jusmi, I'm glad you like the story. Thanks for the visit and droping a comment. You're always welcome.

Jusmi Saikia from Bangalore, India on July 06, 2020:

I really loved reading about the mermaids.. an enjoyable read !

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on July 05, 2020:

Alex, thanks for the visit and the comment.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on July 01, 2020:

Alex, thanks for the visit. You're always welcomed.

Alexander James Guckenberger from Maryland, United States of America on July 01, 2020:

I love the folklore.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on June 25, 2020:

Anupam, you're correct. You will notice also certain demons feared the humankind. These demons has they limitation. Mermaids seems to be on they own for the moment. Thanks for the visit and the brain storming comment.

Anupam Mitu from MUMBAI on June 25, 2020:

Not at all. I am literally scared of every new creature. And I have a kind of phobia of famous people, as they hold a different aura. I am more comfortable with the people who I know.

I have witnessed many people who try to be pleasant but within they are so cunning and shrewd that can't be revealed. I am even okay with demons, as I know who they are, but not with such fairies who have monster's heart.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on June 25, 2020:

Linda, thanks for the visit. The comment you drop is thoughful. I concentrate initially on my state area, because here they influence were highly felt. I think in my next update, I will include details from other parts of the world. Thanks again.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on June 25, 2020:

Jason, mermaids really exits. Somehow, somewhere there was choas in the universe, and they original was abadoned, and they found a favorable settlement on earth at the marine kingdom. In the Niger Delta area where I came from, certain religious cults exist. Here devotees worship them blndly as gods. These were ignorant folks who, instead of working hard and smart naturally, seek an over night solution for finance and power. Jason, thank you for visiting, and droping a thought provoking comment.

Jason Nicolosi from AZ on June 24, 2020:

Great article/poem very interesting. I've always was into mythological creatures and things of that nature. As an artist, I've even created a few mermaid paintings. The ocean is a big crazy place with a lot of weird creatures living it. So, who knows maybe mermaids are real.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on June 24, 2020:

This is an interesting article. Thank you for sharing the information about mermaids and the cultural beliefs in your country, Miebakagh.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on June 14, 2020:

Anupam, fairly, our actions produce reactions whether positive or negative. It is like disturbing the law of gravity and claiming to go scotch free. No, the opposite always happen as seen in the story. If you see a mermaid what would you do? Befriend the being? Count the lmg time costs!

Anupam Mitu from MUMBAI on June 14, 2020:

Wow! Interesting research on mermaids with proper evidence. They sink the boats and do harm to the people? Though, I too believe if humans intervene in some fairy land, the fairies too will do the same. As humans do to the other creatures who are threat to them. Nice reading!

greg cain from Moscow, Idaho, USA on June 12, 2020:

There was a time I thought I would like to meet a mermaid, though that time has passed. Still, this does make one curious...thanks for the fascinating, detailed back story on what I’d long believed to be friendly and mostly harmless creatures.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on June 06, 2020:

Brenda, thanks for the visit, the good read, and the cmment. I'm glad you now has a balanced understanding of the mermaids. The spirit of benevolence arise from fairy tales of telling mermaid tales to kids. Brenda, why should the kids be scared with a malvolent character, even during bed time?

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on June 05, 2020:

Quite an interesting story.

Your poetry is quite good too.

I am a bit saddened, because I have always thought of mermaids as being good...not evil.

Thanks for sharing.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on June 02, 2020:

Hi Bill, thanks for the visit and the comment. You want to see one? That's great but I think it is once in a life time or none. So the stakes are a green hole.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on June 02, 2020:

A fascinating read. I would like to meet one, for sure.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on April 03, 2020:

Hi, Rajah or Uncle Rajah Thamos as some say in Nigeria. You will pay price for seeing the physical. During a very heavy thunder storm and heavy down pour, you'll be out on the high sea or river bank exepecting, can you? I think a pin drop on a rock beside you will you run for dear life. Every fisher man always aware of that, and withdraw for shelter. And the occasion gives us leave sight the being.

Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on March 30, 2020:

I have always been fascinated by mermaid pictures and hazy videos, some soaking in the sun on a rock in the sea, some of them as skeletons in the dead. I wonder how far they are from myth to lore. I need to see one physically to believe their existence.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on April 23, 2019:

Hi, John, thanks for visiting my page and weighing in. I will like to read your mermaid poem for comparison. Mermaids are indeed very fascinating creatures. Many thanks for your comments again.

John Hansen from Queensland Australia on April 23, 2019:

I found this all very interesting Miebakagh. Mermaids have always fascinated mankind throughout history. I learnt a lot of things I did not know through your article and poem. I also wrote a poem called "The Mermaids Song (a Poem About Sirens) so it is something that intrigues me. Good work.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on March 12, 2019:

Farrah, God's holy angels will always surround you. You may not be aware of that, but the fact is there are there as God's ambassadors. Mermaids seek this experience with men and mislead them. Thank you.

Farrah Young from Lagos, Nigeria on March 12, 2019:

Lol @ needing heaven's help

I hope one never appears

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on March 12, 2019:

Hey, Farrah, if you read well or re-read my story again, you will realize that it is not easy for mermaids to appear to a person. They had specific interests in appearing to human beings. At times, it is to twist or destroy a persons' destiny.

Mermaids usually appear to unreasonable men. Merman will appear to a woman, but at the latter instance, a lady has the most caution, and the meeting always will end in favor of the lady rejecting every proposal.

Do not expect a mermaid to appear to you. And, should that happen, unless you are such a godly tool in the hands of your creator, you need heavens' help. I hope I made myself very clear and understood here. Thank you.

Farrah Young from Lagos, Nigeria on March 12, 2019:

I have heard quite a few stories about mermaids appearing to men, but I never believe these stories.

Guess I'll have to see one in the flesh and have it touch me to do so.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on March 11, 2019:

Hey, Mark, thanks for visiting, and weighing. You are always welcomed. Have a nice time.

Mark Tulin from Palm Springs, California on March 10, 2019:

Beautiful poem and fascinating commentary.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on March 07, 2019:

Hey, Roberts, many thanks. I think I will let you know when I release one or two of them. Have a great day!

Robert Sacchi on March 06, 2019:

Looking forward to them.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on March 06, 2019:

Hello, Roberts, thanks for visiting and reading my latest article. I am thinking of writing more about such stories. Have a wonderful day today.

Robert Sacchi on March 05, 2019:

Thank you for sharing these local legends.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on March 03, 2019:

Hello, Pamela, thanks for visiting and reading my latest story. I am glad that your boys enjoy fishing likewise. Seeing a mermaid is not as easy as I said in the story. They are spirits, and we human beings have no dealings with them in the first place. And, we dare not intrude into their world. They appeared to a man at certain times is deceptive. Like as I said, it is to corrupt man, leading him/her astray. Thanks again.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on March 03, 2019:

I enjoyed all the tales about mermaids and fishing. My boys liked fishing also. I have to say I have never seen a mermaid!

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on March 02, 2019:

Hey, Liz Westwood, that's why I confirmed my story to my local realities. We have much to learn from one another on an in-depth basis. Thank you for visiting and weighing in.

Liz Westwood from UK on March 02, 2019:

In western culture mermaids tend to appear in fairy tales. It's interesting to hear your version about mermaids.

Miebakagh Fiberesima (author) from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on March 01, 2019:

This is a story I write from my historical background. I hope to start writing a history of the Okrika peoples along. Enjoy.

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