the sky luminescent pearl, not lacre,
shifts from blue imbroglio to indigo to serene
hue; rain swirls as wind and cloud breathe great globes
of balloon splattering drops, each visibly bursting as if leaping
from the ground in answer to multiple echoes of countless
splat others at impact.

A thundercloud resplendent as an admiral’s ship
settling in harbour, blows in above us. Lightning
bursts within, impossibly back upon itself illuminating
hidden canyons, mountains of cloud musclin’ might;
a giant lantern on parade.

Jarret, resplendent, his stance wide, his
weight forward, his green white magenta
water pistol aimed at the skies, aloft against heaven
says, “Pyow, P-yow, P-yow.”

The night is crackling, popping, echoing with
pings, patters, pongs POWS and; EXPLOSIONS LOUD—
far away.

The apex of all that was British or colonial or so we are told
by cannon, mortar fire, flare, pop caps and tiddly-pangs—
we wait, anticipating the stench
of sulphur, cordite, potassium the past to waft away

People imitate thunder and do not realize it.
Jarret and I sprawl at the lintel of Granny’s door
watching swirls and sheets of rain sweep across the lawn,
our gunpowder safe and dry, stored for another night.
The wind blows backwash of spray upon us.

Jarret and I curl into each other. Lightning arcs
from cloud to cloud. “Listen”, “Quiet”, “Any moment now”
I distract him until suddenly CRACK
unexpected thunder sends him leaping against me.

“Listen to the sky go Pow Pow Pyow,” he whispers
The thunder passes, far off pops and rumbles
I wait for another flash as it blinds us

instant arc flash explodes

thunder clap beside us we JUMP
into each other, Jarret shouting “Daddy, Daddy, Daddy”
raises his pistol, “Shoot Daddy Shoot” he implores

I guide my thumb and forefinger to mimic his salute
“PYOW, PYOW, PYOW,” we bellow into the wind

that echoes rumbles in our stomachs, the earth

twirls beneath us, an incomprehensible halo.

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