Inspired by “The Little Mermaid” - Hans Christian Andersen
In May of 2012 I collaborated in a concert called “Twisted Fables & Woven Worlds” with two other fabulous artists, Catherine Gell (singer/songwriter) and Erin Dingle (poet/spoken word artist). The concert was themed around iconic objects from fairy tales and myth, which afforded me the creative space to write songs inspired by many of my favorite stories. In particular it provided me an opportunity to write a song that had been floating around my mind for a number of years, and that was the song of the Little Mermaid. I am not talking about precocious Disney princesses here, but rather the original, more poignant story of the Little Mermaid written by Hans Christian Andersen. It was a story that left an indelible mark on me as a child, her deep longing to feel whole, the sweetness of her sacrifice, the truth of her love. These were life lessons to me, as much as playground politics. She was real to me because I could find myself in her, because I could feel her pain, but more importantly, I could live her love.
When I perform this song live, I often tell the story of my daughter Melaine, to whom I gifted a book of Hans Christian Andersen stories when she was about 9 years old. One day shortly after she came down the stairs from her room with a pensive look on her face. She asked, “why did Disney change the ending to The Little Mermaid? Why? It takes away all the meaning”. Why indeed.
Written in January of 2012