They shot a mermaid on 42nd street,
Between the moon and the corner
They found her swimming in the gutter
With her sea secrets and glistening green promise,
But her beauty was a cutout from a Cosmopolitan magazine
And her tail was a story no-one could read.
So the taxidermist took her away in a net
And mounted her on a passive- aggressive wall,
Scarlett and beetroot baked she coloured the silence with her blood
And children paid to touch her skin and wished for spun sugar and peppermints
Some even kissed her cold sea mouth and dreamt of places they’d never go.
They shot a mermaid on 42nd street
Between the subway and the museum
They wrapped her in a white sheet and watched her ocean blood
Colour it, like tears from a whale.