And so lives sound,
a chorus of sound, a glorious cacophony, a clatter,
a sound of ladies looking, laughing, touting, shouting
a shuffle of feet, tiny feet, tiny ladies, on a tiny street, on the ladies street
with brollies, bright brollies, tartan brollies, cheap brollies, silly brollies,
bending brollies, brollies broken by the sound of the rain falling down,
of the ladies laughing, of the buyers buying, of the colours clashing,
brollies battered by the weather, polyester being pelted, pounded,
brollies held by ladies, as they barter, as they battle for the better buy,
the ladies at the ladies market, in Hong Kong, on a Sunday
and I’m jet lagged and bargained out
and that bitch saw me coming
and is laughing at me going,
holding all my money
in her hands, not mine!
And so lives sound,
raindrops on tartans
and high pitched voices,
squeezing, screeching
and giggling, always giggling
and golden cats nodding,
nodding at golden dreams
as tiny feet plod in puddles,
ladies feet in little puddles
that are free, the only things
that are free on Sundays
in the rain, at the market,
the ladies market and I bought too much Kitty,
too much kitsch, too much crap but it’s market day
and I’m jet lagged and the little ladies are scary
and my head is weary, big feet in little puddles,
foreign puddles, in China, in far away China, big trouble in little China
although it’s not so little but filled with big chips and cracks
and nodding cats grinning in glaring gold,
do you need shades? They have shades
on a tiny street with towering blocks chipped and cracked
and looming overhead, in the clouds, drowning in the dragon’s breath
but there are lights and movement,
a chorus of lights, a cacophony of movement
and the lights are bright and the buildings broken
but the movement is magical.
A dragon starts dancing in the distance
with men underneath, a polyester dragon,
a pink polyester dragon with many legs
moving, marching, mens legs on the ladies street,
on the ladies market, winding through the ladies faces
and shouting and bartering and rubbish,
in my bags there is rubbish, seriously overly priced rubbish
but I’m smiling at the faces of the ladies and the dragons and the legs
and dodging the brollies, the bobbing bright brollies, all racing with the dragons,
on Sunday, at the market, and the dragon is marching onwards, ever onwards
and the cats are forever nodding or bowing or laughing on the dark side of the day,
on this ladies day, on this Sunday, at this market, while the foreign rain is falling.

All Words and Photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

Photograph taken at the Ladies Market in Hong Kong.



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