Rio--On the Beach at Ipanema

©May 2010 RG Liberty



I feel the wind, I see the Bay of Rio with its waves crashing on shore to sparkle off the brown bodies of the beautiful young girls.

I play the flirting game as I walk, eyes brashly filling with the element-touched cornucopia of proud young flesh,
daring me to see closer, deeper, drink in the possibilities of the waves of Rio.

Without warning my brain reacts and I avert my eyes--too late--from an obese old woman in a floss bikini and postage stamp bra--
never quite covering the intended spots. She wears a wide, happy smile

Her round, greasy, hairy, short and bald husband, whose Speed-O is lost between his cheeks and under his belly,

Smiles and waves at me as he passes, followed by a chain of grandchildren,

Knowing it will take days to burn that picture from the Gringo's memory.

I drop my head, scrunch my toes into the wet, cool sand and listen to the young beauties giggling in Portuguese
as they walk around me on the shore,

This is Brazil; you take the stunningly raw with the stunningly beautiful.

But I'm not trusting to open my eyes. Not until I get back to the cabstand, at least.

Tomorrow, I'll be better prepared for the variety of beauty.

I smile to myself on the cab's mad dash through impossible openings

And finally realize the meaning of that word.


Laughing children, smiling grandparents --beautiful.