Saturday, 26 June 2021

'All Dorothy Wants' by Emily Devane

First, she likes to dance in her bedroom to the My Fair Lady soundtrack, or, more specifically, I Could Have Danced All Night, while wearing a long white nightgown just like Audrey Hepburn in the film. Dorothy doesn’t care that Audrey never sang those songs, her face a luminous, glowing, silvery moon.

Second, she does not have the feet for dance. Dorothy’s turn towards each other, the left sidling up to the right like two shy young ladies at a party, the one whispering into the other’s ear. It’s not her fault she was made like that, with her left hip twisting inwards. Early attempts at ballet were painful. She recalls the dance teacher, Madame Small, tapping her on the knees with a wooden ruler saying: she will turn that foot of hers (as if she had any choice in the matter).

Third, she has been having a series of dreams about 3-wheeler cars. She thinks it’s because the man who lives in the old gatehouse across the road has one in baby blue. Last week, lightning tore a strip off the tall fir tree; the remaining part swayed and tottered and sliced right through his roof. In her dreams, Dorothy has a yellow 3-wheeled car, a Reliant Omelette, it’s called. When she goes to drive the Omelette, she finds that it’s a pedal car with bare ground beneath her feet. She gets in nonetheless and pedals as fast as she can, all the while thinking of Rex Harrison’s smiling face.

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