The maids of the ocean take tea at [low noon],
Drifting 'midst coral by light of the moon.
The maids of the ocean take tea in great swallows,
Inhaling, exhaling in kelp-scented billows.
They drift in the silks of drowned, maudlin lovers,
[In hallways of sand] and [sea salt|salt]-crusted bowers.
They sing in the deep and flutter their lashes,
Here, a tail flicks as an [amber] eye flashes.
Hookahs they light from [A Fire Upon the Deep|fires beneath],
Bricks from the sailors sung to their knees.
Their ransom is [Russian tea|Russian], their doom is in [sencha green tea|green],
That molds in the salt and clumps in the seams.
They gossip of ships, and of shells, and of shale,
They whisper of lovers of [England expects that every man will do his duty|heartwood and sails].
They whisper of oaks hewn to carry them far,
To sink in the waves under song-strangled star.
'round spigots and spouts, lips pursing tight,
Painted with green [in the sea-tinted night].
Arrayed in their silks, with fish-pasted scones,
Beneath in their bowers on [weed-riddled thrones].