WATCHING HER GO!

a poem by Conrad Kruger van den Bergh, South Africa - poetry writer, author, poet

She runs right past me
butt naked
right down the street
just on the other side of the cars
parked all along the sidewalk
her long dark hair trailing behind her
like treads of wild silk
flapping in the wind
she’s smiling as she goes
but I don’t say a word
I just watch her go
for at my age
extraordinary events require complete silence
and anyway
it’s not every day
that a happy naked woman
with beautiful long hair
runs right past me
down the road

I watch her go
and so does a few dozen other people
who a few seconds ago
were all minding their own business
walking along here on the sidewalk
and just as I am enjoying the show
Mazzy, my crazy neighbour from across the hallway
who lately has been following me around
like a zombie from a B-grade movie
sweeps a strand of blond curls out of her eyes
sticks her bony finger into my ribs
and yells into my ear; “Go after her! Give her your coat?”
I don’t even bother to look at Mazzy
just keep my eyes fixed on the naked woman
running further down the road
“What? I’m not going to run after her. And anyway, what for? She doesn’t look cold to me.”
“She obviously stoned on something!” Mazzy yells again, “…she doesn’t know she’s naked! Go after her! Give her your coat!”
“What? She’s not stoned on anything! She’s just a happy exhibitionist streaking down the road”
“You’re a retard!” Mazzy’s yelling to loud; “…go give her your coat!”
the whole wide world can hear her shouting at me
for some reason when it comes to Mazzy
a social drama can start wherever it wants
but it always has to end with me
“Let her run,” I say, and then point my finger down the road; “…she might turn around somewhere down there and come back this way and then we can all get a better view of it all.”
“You’re a retard!” She shouts again
and my eyes keep on following the naked woman
who now seemed to have picked up speed
I’m hoping she’s going to turn around somewhere down there
and run back this way
but she doesn’t turn around
she sweeps wild hair again
more silk sweeping with the breeze
and gently tilts her head to one side
her whole body bobbing up and down in her run
then she takes a sharp turn
up the first road to the left
and like the few other dozen people on the sidewalk
I remain frozen
staring at the corner down there
watching her streak around it
then disappear out of sight
and with everybody else
I’m still waiting for her to come around this way
but nothing happens
nobody sees her
she’s gone
and Mazzy, my crazy neighbour from across the hallway
doesn't wait for anything to happen either
she takes a few steps towards me
sticks her bony finger into my ribs again
and yells at me
again
“You're a retard!”

Conrad Kruger van den Bergh (Copyright, 2018)

EVENING WALK IN PARLIAMENT STREET, CENTRAL
All about Mazzy

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