All those men were there inside,
when she came in totally naked.
They had been drinking: they began to spit.
Newly come from the river, she knew nothing.
She was a mermaid who had lost her way.
The insults flowed down her gleaming flesh.
Obscenities drowned her golden breasts.
Not knowing tears, she did not weep tears.
Not knowing clothes, she did not have clothes.
They blackened her with burnt corks and cigarette stubs,
and rolled around laughing on the tavern floor.
She did not speak because she had no speech.
Her eyes were the colour of distant love,
her twin arms were made of white topaz.
Her lips moved, silent, in a coral light,
and suddenly she went out by that door.
Entering the river she was cleaned,
shining like a white stone in the rain,
and without looking back she swam again
swam towards emptiness, swam towards death.
Mermaid, Green, Lounging 2020
12 x 35 inches
polyurethane foam, coated with UreCoat, pigment, sand and wax
Nancy Evans @artblather
photo by Paula Goldman
Fable Of The Mermaid And The Drunks 1958
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Artists and Poems: Los Angeles 2021
Curated by members of the Durden and Ray curatorial collective
Nicole Belle, Gary Brewer, Gul Cagin, Joe Davidson, Mariquita “Micki” Davis, Danny Angel Escalante, Nancy Evans, Rebecca Farr, Leslie Foster, Christine Frerichs, Gajin Fujita, Iva Gueorguieva, Hasef, Mike Hazel, Regina Herod, Kiel Johnson, Aline Mare, Stephanie Mercado, Sandeep Mukherjee, Hung Viet Nguyen, Elizabeth Preger, Max Presneill, Bruce Richards, Colin Roberts, Karrie Ross, Orly Ruaimi, Debra Scacco, Sonja Schenk, Greg Schenk, Coleen Sterritt, Devon Tsuno, Rodrigo Valenzuela, Marnie Weber, Lisa Wedgeworth, Liat Yossifor, HK Zamani
About Artists and Poems: Los Angeles 2021