The Rainbow – A Bridge between Magical and Mundane

“Two bubbles found they had rainbows on their curves.
They flickered out saying:
“It was worth being a bubble, just to have held that rainbow thirty seconds.”
― Carl Sandburg

I said I was going to wrote a post about the significance of rainbows. But somehow it just wasn’t flowing, and there is already so much out there. You already know the wonderful promises which that coloured arch across the sky, appearing, as it does, at times of rain AND sun, holds. (Though, according to Wikipedia, in some rainforest locales, they are seen as a bad omen, probably because of the weather that comes along with them). An emblem of tolerance, a reminder of a child loved and lost too soon – and a child who came afterwards. A message. A promise. A hope.

 

So, I thought instead I would share with you something else. Something you won’t find anywhere else (unless you have a copy of my book). It’s a story I wrote a while ago, when I was very sad and needed to feel better. I hope you like it.

Iris’s Rainbow

One day a woman had a baby girl. That baby girl grew up, and one day she had a baby girl. This girl was called Iris. Iris loved to dance in puddles, sing loudly, and never wanted to go to bed when it was bedtime.

Other people said to Iris’s mama that she had spoiled Iris. “She needs to learn that she cannot always have her own way,” they would tell her sternly.

Iris’s mother said nothing and just smiled. She knew that she had not spoiled Iris and that she can always have her own way. She fed her when she was hungry, cuddled her when she was sad, comforted her when she was cross and told her stories when it was late at night and the other mamas had sent their children to bed. 

Iris loved her mama and grew into a strong and generous woman. She painted, sang and wrote beautiful stories, bringing joy to all around her. And she still liked to dance in puddles. 

One day Iris fell in love. She sang songs to her love and he sang to her. They both loved to curl up beside the fire and share stories. Soon Iris’s belly blossomed and swelled. Her baby, a girl, was born. Iris was so happy. She loved being a mama. Her days were full of sunshine (and, of course, a little rain, and she would dance with her daughter in the puddles). 

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When Iris was forty years old her own mama got ill. Really ill. Iris fed her when she was hungry and cuddled her when they were both sad. They stayed up late at night sharing stories. And then one day Iris’s mama died. 

Iris’s heart was broken. Her mama was her rock, her foundation. Without her in the world she felt like a kite tossed by the breeze, a drifting leaf in a huge lake. She had no anchor. She lost her joy.

Days passed and Iris drifted. She was empty. Her daughter would wind her arms around her neck and try to fill the hole but it was too deep. Weeks passed and Iris still felt hollow. Months passed and Iris’s daughter felt her mama slipping away. 

“Mama, let’s go for a walk, please.” Iris didn’t want to walk but she loved her daughter so they put on their coats. It had been raining that morning, but Iris didn’t dance in the puddles. She didn’t even splash. Her daughter held her hand. 

They walked and walked till they came to the top of a hill. You could see all around and about. Above the next hill they saw a rainbow. 

“What is a rainbow, Mama?” 

“It is a bridge between worlds.” 

“It’s beautiful!”

“Yes,” Iris replied, and then after a pause, “Yes, it is.”

Iris looked hard at the rainbow arching over them, no beginning, no end. Iris saw her mama in the rainbow. She remembered her voice, her smell, the feel of her arms around her. And Iris laughed and cried and laughed and cried and laughed and cried. She was found. 

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