Tarman, a barge, is the oldest of the liveships. He was made before the Rain Wilds people began to build ships with figureheads, but instead has painted eyes on his bow. He can only communicate with his crew by mental images or dreams; he sometimes, after spending time with the Cassarick dragons, is able to express himself more clearly to Leftrin, his captain.
After the Cassarick dragons hatch, Leftrin finds a dead cocoon. After consulting with Tarman, Leftrin uses the wizardwood to improve Tarman by giving him four webbed feet and a tail, thus improving the maneuverability of the boat.
Tarman stalls at a fork in the river and communicates with the dragons via scent. One of the dragons recognizes the scent of Tarman's carved limbs as belonging to Sessurea. It is likely that Sessurea's memories are what prompts Tarman to stall at the fork.