Waves crash on nearby rocks, I’m about ten,
sitting in a small room full of paintings,
patterned fabrics on sofas from a long time ago,
a room filled with untouchable pieces,
be careful where you step, rickety tables,
dad’s deep voice, mum crying in the bathroom.
Oil paint in a wooden frame, he always liked wood,
no wind, the sky blue, yellow sun in the corner.
Three women stand on a beach,
face the water, backs laced with thin bikinis.
There is no fear in the world of these three women
captured unknowing in his glance.
The world he pictured,
not the stifled world
we lived in.
Painted like a memory,
a beach I’ve seen in Greece,
a small cove sheltered from waves,
not the beach we lived near.
I might be mistaken, haven’t seen the painting
for more than five years now.
Thunder crashes, cold rain falls,
only the sound of hard drops
thudding, and his voice, like thunder,
the light gone from the world
as the world closes down.
The hand that made it
is not the man I knew. He had time to paint
a world we did not know.
No time for us; no time
now he is gone.
First Published Ishaan Literary Review Issue 6 2015