Entry - MAG Poetry Prize 2011

The White Dress

by Marc Smith

Over the bridge, fresh spring night
lights from the fairground away to my right
Looked to my left, black night sky
headlights in front from cars passing by.

Woman in white crossing the street
drunk, she faltered, tripped over her feet
The driver hadn't seen her fall to the ground
a screech, a scream, a crash - no sound.

People rushed over, my feet like lead
fairground still moving blue green red
Controlling my body I walked to the scene
a hole in her head where her brain should have been.

Blood trickled down her pretty white dress
dead eyes wide open, 'oh fuck, what a mess' -
Stepping away I looked at her face
wondered her name, so young, a disgrace.

White dress turned red like fair lights behind me
screams from the fairground, or was it her family?
Eyes clean white like lights in the street
the street where she laid, her life incomplete.

The image still haunts me some days and most nights
silhouette of her body in front of headlights -

White dress turned red
clean white eyes
hole in her head
The first time I'd seen
a body lay dead.

Added: 28.04.2011

Judges' comments on this poem


juxtaposition of screaming and family was very clever.