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Once, on a Night of Coloured Rain



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Your dress that stopped traffic


on a hot evening once in Spain, fireworks

and a harbour tide, coloured lights for rain. My sister

halfway to grown up, our feet dangling over the edge

full of paella and ice cream, you stopped traffic,

our mum,

who taught special needs and sung choir and planted a hedge

between us and the rough lot next door. They whistled from bars

at just how red

and green and swirled all over with light you were,

our mum

that hot night, walking out with dad by the harbour in Spain. Fireworks

had nothing on you, the sea smelt of the tide,


of colours that fell and got lost at our feet. We came to that dress last, your grandaughter


holding up each one by the hangers on the bed where you died. My sister took it

to wear for her holiday in Spain: Your dress that stopped traffic


on a hot evening

once in a night of coloured rain.


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  • Bea Davenport July 16, 2013, 10:20 am

    I loved this – beautiful imagery and a song-like refrain. Very moving. We often only think of our parents as young and beautiful after they have gone.