What’s better than yesterday’s hibiscus?
The same hibiscus after a rain!
For Cee’s FOTD.
What’s better than yesterday’s hibiscus?
The same hibiscus after a rain!
For Cee’s FOTD.
These sounds, recorded from the next hill over from the one I live on, are what I’ve been hearing for the past month or so. They are the harbingers of the rainy season, which started tonight. I can see lightning flashing from the glass walls to the left and in front of my bed, hear the thunder rolling around the lake, smell the petrichor in the air, feel the slight spray through the screen of the one sliding glass door I can’t stand to close. Those of us who live here year round love the rainy season. The relief from both the dry heat and the crowds. Tonight I will breathe easy in the fresh air.
A few years ago, Forgottenman was here for the start of the rainy season and THIS is what he had to say about it.
This year the rains came early, starting the day after the men came to begin stripping and resurfacing my roofs. The day after they were supposed to remove the skylight, hurricane-force winds and torrential rains made me glad for once, that they had been no-shows. A month later, the repairs are over and we’ve settled into the daily or nightly showers. I am snug in my house and the mountains behind me are covered with a vivid green. Soon water will be shooting in rivers down the arroyos and cobblestone roads that lead down to the lake from my house and every teja will serve as its own channel for individual rios streaming down from my roof into waterfalls that will arc down to the terrace tiles below.
The rainy season
breaks its usual habit.
A rude early guest.
For dVerse Poets.
Rainy Season Whine
They can’t control the weather. The rain is its own boss.
So in the rainy season, we get our share of moss.
It wouldn’t be so bad if it would just grow where we choose,
but in the rainy season, it grows inside my shoes.
From June to September, we fall asleep to rain
and then in the morning, we wake up to it again.
Our clothing’s always soggy. Our clean cars do not last.
We can’t sit on the patio for a light repast.
We cannot play touch football with the wife and kids,
for when we do, our touchdowns wind up as muddy skids.
The dog does not get walked enough, so he’s a restless doggy,
and when we order pizza, the box is always soggy.
Pent up with our families, tempers sometimes flare.
Dad wigs out when the roof leaks, sis bemoans her frizzy hair.
Mom says that the fudge won’t set and brother is complaining
that the wifi doesn’t seem to work so well when it is raining.
We know the flowers need it, as does the reservoir.
Restrictions in water usage in the summer are a bore.
It’s true water’s a blessing. We are much in its debt,
but is there no way to get it without getting wet?
The FOWC challenge word today is control.
It is an Armageddon of storms. The local weather site records two hundred strikes of lightning per minute at its height. At first long jagged snake strikes, then two house-shaking claps of thunder and sheet lightning that seems to surround my house. I worry about my two tall Edwardian palms—the highest things anywhere near me. Just yesterday I called my tree guy to tell him I think they are dying. The palm beetle has made its sinister way into our area and since I’ve just had all my palms trimmed, it has crossed my mind that perhaps the tree cutters brought them with them on tools or clothing. It was a few days after they left that huge chunks started to fall off of the trunks and the fronds, green a few days ago, started to turn yellow.
Just a half hour ago, before the wind and the first claps of thunder and stabs of lightning and initial raindrops had hit, I had wondered when the next big chunk of tree would fall. At that exact instant, I heard a loud slapping bang as another chunk fell. As though in concert, the first tympani of thunder sounded, the wind came up and I heard the first spatters of rain against my skylight high above me on the dome of my living room.
Then my whole word was suffused by light and the crack and long roll of thunder as one peal of thunder ran into the next in one long colossal drum roll. The rain pelted down and a high thin wail of wind seemed to whistle around something high up on my house. All rounded corners, there is little sharpness to catch the wind. It is the first time in the 17 years I’ve lived here that I’ve heard this keening banshee whine that I thought I’d left behind me in Wyoming thirty-seven years ago. It was the Mariah of winds, a weather horror story that didn’t fit in here in Mexico, and as though it knew it, after two spine-chilling entwining moaning shrieks, it disappeared.
The night, black and starless, lit up repeatedly, as bright as daylight, like giant flashbulbs going off. The two nearly denuded Edwardian palms stood out starkly against the white sky. “Take a picture,” my Skype friend demanded, and suddenly, my formerly lost camera appeared as if by magic in front of me. Thirty-one times, I tried in vain to capture the lit-up sky. Thirty-one times, I caught only the neighbor’s porch light against a pitch-black sky. Then, on my thirty-second attempt, when the sky flashed white and then black again, the whiteness remained frozen on my camera screen. I had caught it!
An hour after the first clap of thunder, the storm has abated. My house forms some demarcation line as I can hear rain still steadily falling on the front terrace, whereas there is no rain at all on the back terrace or yard. The thunder has stopped. The lightning has been clicked off. Once again I can hear the whir of my tiny desk fan. The dogs lie curled in their beds, as unperturbed as they were even in the height of the storm. They are Mexican street dogs, accustomed to fireworks and the celebratory firing of guns into the air, to loud weekend parties in the houses across the street that stretch into the morning hours, to loud banda music and the air brakes of big trucks carrying gravel or boulders up and down the mountain. Only the sound of the clink of the cat dishes on the stone terrace as I feed them half a house a way could stir them from their beds. The cats are no doubt in an entwined pile in their large and cushy bed in the garage. All things around me: the storm, the cats and the dogs, have put themselves to bed and it is my turn to cease my consideration of the Armageddon that once again has threatened and then passed us by. All’s right with the night for now and that is as much assurance as we are likely to get in this world––a lullaby of sorts telling us its time to end the adventure for today and to sleep.
One second it is night and the next it is day!
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 it when I say to you, it’s best to take a cab.
With all of its sounds
someone else’s sounds
echo around it.
The space inside of it
is broken, too.
Only the constant rain
seeks to fill it.
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?
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!
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.)
In Mexico, it is the rainy season
and so the rain falls down.
The dogs refuse to leave their beds.
They curl instead, and I do, too,
listening to the steady drip of rain from tejas
and Pasiano’s more massive splashes
as he scoops water from the tub
which never empties,
by the rains.
Now hot water streams
from pipes into the hot tub.
Mineral water heated by volcanic fire
steams as it meets cool water falling
from above and the cool air that carries it.
It is still morning, but even tonight I’ll find
no fireworks in Mexico on the Fourth of July,
for independence was not granted evenly around this world.
And I who love the fertile darkness of night,
but also love surprises
that the fireworks bring,
must patiently wait for independence to find
this new country I found 13 years ago.
No rains ever mar her independence
on September 16.
The rainy season over,
all necks will crane in the churchyard crush
to see the wild castillo
and its corona spinning, spinning
to lift off into the air above—
independence held back until finally
it cannot help but rise
Note: September 16 is Grito de Dolores (Mexico’s Independence Day)
The Prompt: It’s Your Party—Since many are marking their country’s “birthday” in the US today, we wanted to ask: How do you celebrate yours? Are you all for a big bash, or more of a low-key birthday boy/girl?
The rain falls
fresh as cucumbers
on cobblestones and tiles,
the dust of summer
washed from crevasses
and curves of stone and clay.
The air is cleansed
of the scent of primavera,
and flamboyant trees
and the whole world
breathes easily again.
Clouds dried up
the silent birds
from their covering leaves
and open in chorus
to the booming crack
of cohetes, splitting the air
of Saint John the Baptist
who has baptized all
The Prompt: Seasonal Scents—S’mores, salty ocean breezes, veggie burgers on the grill, sweaty people on the bus — what’s the smell you associate the most with summer?