Every day in the summer season she would come
to her special spot at twilight
and lean across the vine covered rail
of the old stone bridge to wait.
It was a magic time she said
and if you wanted to see them
you must be patient and persistent.
When the sun’s light is the right shade of gold,
its rays peek through the moss draperies
of the tall live oaks.
Like spotlights they pinpoint the lily pad paths
meandering across dark mauve mirrors
that reflect lush verdure and aubergine sky.
She would wait there, wide-eyed and certain
and they’d appear as if for her alone.
Dressed in cloud-white petal tutus scores of flower fairies,
each on her own lily pad stage,
each perfuming the humid air
with a soft sweet scent, danced into the dark.
She doesn’t come here anymore,
not since she married and moved far away.
But sometimes, when the light is right
I see the faint outline of a little girl
leaning over the railing and gazing
at the lily pads in bloom, waiting for the ballet to begin.