Mermaid Out of Water


A sylphine little naiad
Found herself upon the land.
Why her pond was now a desert
She just could not comprehend.

She had never dealt in plastic,
Neither purchased nor used gas.
She had  no use for electric
Being an aquatic lass.

Greenhouse gases were a mystery.
Climate change had been unknown.
Till rising temperatures and unchecked drought
Devoured her wet home.

Her marine adapted system
Needed water things to eat.
No other pond place could she walk to
For she hadn’t any feet,

Her slick skin dimmed and dried out,
Her thick, light hair went lank.
Her gorgeous sequined rainbow tail
Rotted to brown and stank.

Humans, surprised to find her,
Surmised what she might be.
A fattened, dying catfish
Or a slender manatee?

Adapt! They cried. Evolve or die!
Or sing for life and food!
But her thirsty throat was iron.
All sounds she made were rude.

An arrogant, pretentious man
Stood up before the crowd.
He held his chin up very high.
His voice was very loud.

Aren’t all mermaids lovely?
Aren’t they sirens of fair song?
This toad cannot be that, laughed he.
I know I am not wrong!

Dear friend, offered a wiser man,
Perhaps you just forgot
A thing can not be all it naturally is
When it is where it’s naturally not.

photo & poem by

HS 8-29-2016


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