Kuroi Ame (Black Rain)
By orangedream
Published: July 10, 2008
Updated: July 10, 2008

An ordinary morning
just got out of bed
getting ready for school
looked out the window
then the sky turned red
a blinding white light
roof tiles
falling on my head
as I floated through the air
like an astronaut
no ordinary morning
when the sky turned red.

As the world turned upside down
day turned into night
landed on the ground
darkness
nothingness
dust
all around
heard the sound
of the wind
and someone crying
as the world turned upside down.

Then I heard a noise
like a thousand
mosquitoes buzzing
humming
was then I saw the ghosts
hundreds of them
slowly coming up the hill
from the city below
line after line
with their hands held aloft –
skin peeling off
wet flesh
red flesh
the stench
too much to bear
remember thinking
reminded me -
smelt just like squid -
cooking

and looking in horror
as they came
in their droves
the living dead
such were the ghosts I saw
give us water they begged
caught hold of my legs
gave them the dregs
from the well
and if the dead can die again
as I quenched their thirst
they did -
right in front of my eyes.

As a child
thought I’d killed them
thought I was to blame
but my parents said
the devil had -
he’d laughed so much that day
tears streamed down his face
and fell as black, poisoned rain -
my own tears long-since dried
still I’ve never stopped
feeling ashamed.

Almost sixty three years later
so what memories remain?
Seems everyone’s forgotten
that god-forsaken day
that to some
was a lifetime away
and to them I would say
take a look at my skin
the kimono I was wearing
the pattern, indelibly burned in -
such is my everlasting legacy.

And what of the world
what does it see?
Ancient archive images in
stark black and white -
shame life’s not like that
which beggars the question
just what colour would it be …
the colour of pain?

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