Category Archives: Rain

Froggy Weather

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Froggy Weather

Fog reaches out its fingers and reaches out its toes
to prod and follow everywhere the British nation goes.
Then when it gives up teasing them, sun does not come again.
Fog merely slips aside a bit to make room for the rain.

So button up your raincoat. Invest in rubber boots.
During rainy season, fog and rain are in cahoots
to confuse your direction and make your going tough
and dampen down your spirits if your wet clothes aren’t enough.

Pea soup in November moves in thick and tight––
not solving any hunger. Feeding no appetite.
And when rain comes to join it, they make a dismal pair––
soaking up your stockings and limping down your hair.

So if you live in London in Knightsbridge or Picadilly,
it isn’t very practical, in fact its downright silly
to go without galoshes or a GPS when walking
when rain commences soaking you and fog takes up its stalking.

If you’ve set your mind today to visit Scarborough Fair,
it will not be enough to wear some flowers in your hair.
You’d better wear a rain bonnet and tie it good and tight
So parsley sage and rosemary don’t share your soggy plight,

take a big umbrella to protect your provender
lest paper bags you carry prove too soggy  and too tender
to serve the use they’ve earlier served in months less wet and boggy.
There’s no other solution when London life turns froggy!

You’ll mow down little old ladies and run into a rector
while wandering lost through  rain and fog in an unknown sector.
So though you seek to sightsee or merely walk your Lab,
believe when when I say to you, it’s best to take a cab.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/fog/

Barrage

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The sun has gone down and it rained all day today, from the moment I woke up to the present. I decided to spend the day inside. I was trying to watch an episode of “The Voice” sent to me by a friend when the opening line of this poem started running through my mind. So, the program frozen in the middle, I wrote, then had to go take photographs and feed the dogs who now curled back into the beds where they’ve been all day. To be truthful, I spent part of the day in bed, myself. No heat in houses in Mexico, other than a small space heater by my desk. My bed has a mattress pad warmer. Reason enough.

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Barrage

All day long, the rain came down
to soak the mountain, drench the town.
Each dog stayed in to curl into
his protective curlicue.
I took their lead and kept inside
as the world around me cried and cried.

I will not say I’m feeling down,
though I did not choose to paint the town.
My marks on paper turned into
other than a curlicue.
I painted what I felt inside
with words that folded in and cried.

Their pigments bled and rivered down
joining currents from the town,
and tears from other creatures, too,
joined this watery curlicue.
This whirlpool that we’d kept inside
joined us together as we cried.

The sun comes up and moon goes down
over country, lake and town.
Illumination cycles, too,
through reason’s dizzying curlicue.
When we share these truths we’ve found inside,
others hear what we’ve decried.

The whole world may be feeling down
dreading contact with the town.
The words we free may catch them, too,
in their discursive curlicue,
loosening pain they’ve kept inside–
dispelling tears they might have cried.

Rain

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Rain

Gives an excuse
for that bright orange umbrella
and yellow overshoes
toppled over in the hall closet,
yet it is nighttime and I am old.
I lie under blankets on the sofa,
content with its comforting
rat-a-tat
on the plastic skylight
overhead.

It is a friend knocking
insistently,
calling me out to play.

Six years old,
Imprisoned by summer,
we were given occasionally
the refreshing release
of a hard summer rain.
Bare feet splashing,
we raced dry leaf boats
manned by our imaginations
through the caves of culverts,
down to those ultimate puddles
magnificent in their magnitude.

Sixty years later,
I am caught up in the currents
of that sudden rush downwards
and backwards to
a plastic umbrella
abandoned on the sidewalk
as we opened like  flowers.

Rain
hides tears.
Forces growth.
Cleans up our messes
and provides glorious new ones.
Washes away today
and grows tomorrow.

South Dakota Gumbo

South Dakota Gumbo

When the rains came in hot summer,  wheat farmers cursed their harvest luck, for grain sodden by rain just days before cutting was not a good thing; but we children, freed from the worry of our own maintenance (not to mention taxes, next year’s seed fees and the long caravans of combines already making their slow crawl from Kansas in our direction) ran into the streets to glory in it.

We were children of the dry prairie who swam in rivers once or twice a year at church picnics or school picnics and otherwise would swing in playground swings, wedging our heels in the dry dust to push us higher. Snow was the form of precipitation we were most accustomed to–waddling as we tried to execute the Xs and Os of Fox and Geese bundled into two pairs of socks and rubber boots snapped tighter at the top around our thick padded snowsuits, our identities almost obscured under hoods and scarves tied bandit-like over our lower faces.

But in hot July, we streamed unfettered out into the rain.  Bare-footed, bare-legged, we raised naked arms up to greet  rivers pouring down like a waterfall from the sky.  Rain soaked into the gravel of the small prairie town streets, down to the rich black gumbo that filtered out to be washed down the gutters and through the culverts under roads, rushing with such force that it rose back into the air in a liquid rainbow with pressure enough to wash the black from beneath our toes.

We lay under this rainbow as it arced over us, stood at its end like pots of gold ourselves, made more valuable by this precipitation that precipitated in us schemes of trumpet vine boats with soda straw and leaf sails, races and boat near-fatalities as they wedged in too-low culvert underpasses.  Boats “disappeared” for minutes finally gushed out sideways on the other side of the road to rejoin the race down to its finale at that point beyond which we could not follow: Highway 16–that major two-lane route east to west and the southernmost boundary of our free-roaming playground of the entire town.

Forbidden to venture onto this one danger in our otherwise carefree lives, we imagined our boats plummeting out on the other side, arcing high in the plume of water as it dropped to the lower field below the highway.  It must have been a graveyard of vine pod boats, stripped of sails or lying sideways, pinned by them.  We imagined mind soldiers crawling out of them and ascending from the barrow pits along the road to venture back to us through the dangers of the wheels of trucks and cars.  Hiding out in mid-track and on the yellow lines, running with great bursts of speed before the next car came, our imaginary heroes made their ways back to our minds where tomorrow they would play cowboys or supermen or bandits or thieves.

But we were also our own heroes.  Thick black South Dakota gumbo squished between our toes as we waded down ditches in water mid-calf.  Kicking and wiggling, splashing, we craved more immersion in this all-too-rare miracle of summer rain.  We sat down, working our way down ditch rivers on our bottoms, our progress unimpeded by rocks.  We lived on the stoneless western side of the Missouri River, sixty miles away. The glacier somehow having been contained to the eastern side of the river, the western side of the state was relatively free of stones–which made for excellent farm land, easy on the plow.

Gravel, however, was a dear commodity.  Fortunes had been made when veins of it were found–a crop more valuable than wheat or corn or oats or alfalfa. The college educations of
my sisters and me we were probably paid for by the discovery of a vast supply of it on my father’s land and the fact that its discovery coincided with the decision to build first Highway 16 and then Interstate 90.  Trucks of that gravel were hauled  to build first the old road and then  the new Interstate that, built further south of town, would remove some of the dangers of Highway 16, which would be transformed into just a local road–the only paved one in town except for the much older former highway that had cut through the town three blocks to the north.

So it was that future generations of children, perhaps, could follow their dreams to their end.  Find their shattered boats.  Carry their shipwrecked heroes back home with them.  Which perhaps led to less hardy heroes with fewer tests or children who divided themselves from rain, sitting on couches watching television as the rain merely rivered their windows and puddled under the cracks of front doors, trying to get to them and failing.

But in those years before television and interstates and all the things that would have kept us from rain and adventures fueled only by our our imaginations, oh, the richness of gumbo between our toes and the fast rushing wet adventure of rain!

Writer’s note:  I know my sister Patti is going to read this and cry, and so I want to present you with this mental picture of her, college age, Levi cuffs rolled up above her knees, surrounded by five-year-old neighbor kids, enjoying her last big adventure out into the ditches of Murdo, South Dakota, during a July rain.

But wait!  A mere two hours of digging and another hour of editing has produced this proof of my former statement, so to augment your mental image, here is the real one:

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Not quite the gusher depicted in the childhood vignette, but nonetheless, Patti’s final puddle adventure. She had taken my visiting niece out. The next day the neighborhood kids rang our doorbell and asked my mom if Patti could come back outside to play! Ha.

The Prompt: Free Association–Write down the first words that come to mind when we say . . . home. . . soil . . . rain. Use those words in the title of your post.

If I Were Water and You Were Air

The Prompt: For this week’s writing challenge, take on the theme of H2O. What does it mean to be the same thing, in different forms?
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If I Were Water and You Were Air

I used to be restless water—
only the froth and currents
of a moving life.

Now I am still water,
sinking down to where
I can be found
by anyone willing to stand quietly
and look.

Is it true that moving water never freezes?
Is it true that still waters run deep?
Is it true that we are wed in steam?

“What if, caught by air,
it never lets me go?” I ask.

“But even water
turned to air
must fall at last,” you say.

“And what if I fall farther from you?”
I say. “Or what if I never again find banks
that open to contain me?”

I used to be swift flowing water.
Now I am a pool that sinks me deeper every year.
So deep, so deep I sink
that on its way to find me,
even air may lose its way.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_writing_challenge/ice-water-steam/

Two Poems from a Night with No Moon

This Night is Broken

With all of its sounds
spilled out,
someone else’s sounds
echo around it.

The space inside of it
is broken, too.
Only the constant rain
seeks to fill it.

————-

Falling Practice

Twice on the stairs last week
and once in the kitchen.
Lately, these falls
have been coming in threes.

Tonight in the dark, I tripped
over the low metal bench beside the hot tub.
Then a loud bang sent me searching
to find the heavy husk fallen from the palm tree.

I do not venture out alone again,
but sit on the patio
in the light of my laptop,
hoping to escape the third fall.

Your face on the screen turns green
from the reflection of the string
of Chinese lanterns
as we succumb to hard truths.

I fell in love with you so quickly,
but even all these falls
have not taught me how
to fall out of love with you.

 

The Prompt: Howl at the Moon—“Follow your inner moonlight; don’t hide the madness.” — Allen Ginsberg  Do you follow Ginsberg’s advice — in your writing and/or in your everyday life?

Church Thrift Store

The Prompt: It was sunny when you left home, so you didn’t take an umbrella. An hour later, you’re caught in a torrential downpour. You run into the first store you can find — it happens to be a dark, slightly shabby antique store, full of old artifacts, books, and dust. The shop’s ancient proprietor walks out of the back room to greet you. Tell us what happens next!

Church Thrift Store

Caught short by the rainy season, I should have known better.
Though I’d left home high and dry, I knew I’d soon be wetter.
Defenseless  in the downpour, I ducked into a store.
Just to get some shelter,  I rushed in through that door.

I felt that I was lucky as this store was full of stuff,
though finding what I needed might be sort of tough.
The store clerk shuffled up to me, though he could barely stand—
an umbrella just as old as him held up in his hand.

Lucky when I chanced upon this ancient wrinkled fella,
he happened to be carrying a really big umbrella!
I opened up my pocket book and located a fiver.
Now I wouldn’t spend this day wet as a scuba diver!

But when I left that thrift store with my practical new find,
I found that I was actually in the same old bind.
For opening up my parasol, I uttered “What the heck?”
As rivulets of water ran down my head and neck.

The purchase I’d just made, I found, would be no help at all.
I hadn’t noticed that the shop was St. Vincent de Paul.
The fault was no one else’s.  I know it was mine, solely.
I should have realized sooner that my purchase would be holy!

(Please note: St. Vincent de Paul is a secondhand store run by the Catholic Church.)