Sunday, September 18, 2016

What rain is for

The last three summers, as she recalls them, 
Her heavy-clay bit of earth opened hexagonally;
Into the depths she stared, seeing dry darkness
So desiccated, she fancied worms and millipedes

In despair had decamped, seeking other worlds.
She poked at crevasses with her stick, finding bottom

Well deeper than twelve inches. Not knowing
How to garden in any but a rain forest, she
Attacked books and websites for some scheme
The budget could be stretched for: shade cloths,

Raised beds, huge-log hugelkulturs, keyhole beds.
All were possible, but her hands, old, worked
In fits and starts; her money allocated elsewhere.
Now she startles, looking at her night sky, so steeped

In stars all summer, finding it black and close.
Some drops, like bad boys' spitballs, carom off her 

Face. More, and now she's happily drenched in her
Old nightgown, dancing slow circles. Autumn proves
Real at last. This dance is what rain is for.

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