Poetry Tow Truck 35: Rain


I am writing this a week early, as I am now officially caught up to all those posts I banked early in the summer, thinking I was such a smarty pants. Today, (August 20) it is raining, steady and lovely, the rhythm soothing, the grass looking cartoon- emerald green. This is a nice change from the violent storms we have experienced in the Midwest for most of the summer, and it reminds me how much I like the rain.

Rain can be tricky for poets. It certainly creates a mood, but it also creates a temptation for some over-used cliches – the sky is crying, tears raining down someone’s face…you get the idea. Writing about rain can be playful (Langston Hughes’s “Let the rain kiss you”), meditative (“Spring rain/leaking through the roof/dripping from the wasps’ nest” – Basho), funny (Richard Brautigan’s “It’s Raining in Love”), or melancholy (“Strange how hard it rains now/Rows and rows of big dark clouds/When I’m holding on underneath this shroud/Rain” – Patti Griffin).

The Beatles said, “Rain/I don’t mind.” Do you? Take some time to consider the rain in a new way today and write about it.  Here is a poem that is not about rain, but features it. (I wrote this little poem based on a Facebook post by poet extraordinaire Rachel Bunting about nectarines.)

Mid-August Nectarine 

Juice rains over my wrists, between

my fingers, an orgy of sweet, slick

summer, each bite a kiss, tiny planet

bursting with syrup and light.

My forearms shine, a midwife birthing

the first perfect day of the season

after weeks of storms and call-the-elderly

heat, cradling this one flawless fruit,

small bundle of promise-

inside its peel, the world.


10 thoughts on “Poetry Tow Truck 35: Rain

  1. I experienced the same storm as Joseph:

    Riding Out the Storm

    We hunker down for the evening,
    stocked to the eyeballs in preparedness –

    two cases of bottled water, non-perishable food,
    and a fresh supply of batteries lined up
    behind plastic blisters, silver and bronze soldiers
    in stand-by formation.

    We’ve stuffed some into a radio, and some
    in flashlights, so that even in a power failure
    we have enough light to get around the house,
    and enough information to scare the shit out of us.

    We’ve taped big brown asterisks to the windows,
    on the theory that this renders them shatter-proof,
    marking our house for some weather passover,
    marking us as alarmists or planful thinkers.

    We’ve filled the bathtub with water –
    why, we don’t exactly know.

    We’ve topped off our cars with gas,
    got a bunch of cash from the ATM,
    and made sure we have our ID,
    in case someone finds our lifeless bodies.

    We’re ready to ride tonight’s fury –
    wind will bow and rip the trees,
    streets and rivers will run mud-brown and angry,
    rain will clatter like bullets at the window.

    And we’ll witness all this with nervous awe
    as we sip from our bottled water.

  2. Pingback: Friday Freeforall: Peanuts, Crackerjacks, Poetry Prompts « Margo Roby: Wordgathering

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