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a moment in bedforde heights

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It is a dreary Thursday afternoon in Bedforde Heights, NY. In a big grey house on the corner of Main and Bunsen Blvd, Mr. Criley is taking a nap. Mrs. Criley is leaving the house just as the torrential rain stops. She is going to pick their son up from school.
“It’s about time that downpour stopped.” Mrs. Criley grumbles as she drives past gutters and creeks swollen by the deluge.

A bit further down Main St Nancy, an eccentric young woman with thick round glasses and protruding front teeth, is struggling to open her umbrella while clinging tightly to the leashes of three nervous Chihuahuas. She does not like rain; it puts her in a foul mood and she considers it a troubling omen.

In a cramped townhouse a few blocks up the hill, an elderly woman bends over to poor her husband some tea. The wizened man, a former doctor, enjoys the rain. As a boy he relished the feeling of it on his face and dripping down his neck, but now he listens to it drumming on the roof above his head and he is grateful for the shelter that roof provides. He drops some ice cubes into his tea and thanks his wife.

The sky begins to clear and the sun emerges from the clouds. A few birds call to each other in the streets and take flight. A dog barks, and the school bell rings out 3:00. Mrs. Criley waits in the parking lot listening to the weather report in her car. As her son emerges from the doorway of Bedforde Heights Elementary, he squints into the misty sky. Good. There is nothing that would cancel his soccer practice. But wait, there is something! His eye is caught by a glimmer of color arcing into the clouds. It's more beautiful than in any pictures he’s seen! He runs to his mother’s car and taps on the window. She climbs out and they stand together, gazing at it with an occasional murmured “wow” or “cool”.

Nancy stops fumbling with the clasp of her umbrella and turns her face to the clouds. She raises her hand and points to it, telling her chihuahuas that it is a promising omen for their future. Her fidgeting companions are not very interested, though.

And in the townhouse overlooking it all, the old man stands before a glass door, sipping his tea thoughtfully. He sees it, too. He calls his wife to his side, and together they hobble outside onto their balcony. Brilliant hues illuminate the sky, in some places bold and sharp; wispy and pale in others. The old man puts his arm around his wife’s shoulder, and turns to her.
“The beauty in this,” he says, “is that, though we don’t know it, it is a moment shared by strangers. Almost every citizen of Bedforde Heights is right now marveling at the sight we are marveling at. The life of each person is touched by these colors, and their paths meet right here, right now; under this rainbow.”

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Annmarie11_12_13 said...
Aug. 31, 2011 at 9:05 am
I love this.  I really and truly love this.  
DramaDutchess said...
Jul. 21, 2011 at 12:05 am
Great job! I love the different reactions of several people to the rain and how they were all awed by the rainbow it created. Come check out my first piece, Camellia Gardens and please comment too!
DramaDutchess replied...
Jul. 26, 2011 at 2:04 pm
Hey, I just got another poem published called What is a rose?. Check it out?
DramaDutchess replied...
Aug. 7, 2011 at 6:13 pm
I hate to advertise again, but I got three more pieces published. Check them out?
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