Rain pounds on the roof behind me, and it rushes down the trench by the sidewalk. The sound is an arrhythmic drum line chorus with rumbling thunder accompaniment. All day long, on and off, we’ve had thunderstorms, the leftovers of Hurricane Isaac finally blowing into town. Puddles turn into pools in my yard.
I stand in the downpour, completely enveloped. Gray sheets obscure everything, blurring familiar shapes and bringing false ones to life. I’m soaked to the skin. Wet needles plaster me down and peel me to the bone. Nothing is dry. Nothing should be dry. The rain records me; it recognizes every crevice and pore and marks me its own.
That explosion is the violent sky tearing apart with longing for the ground. The moaning is the the earth gulping down the deluge. The ozone remnants of a solitary fire linger as afterimages. Then these too are swallowed. Every striking droplet completes a cycle, even if I can’t see the rebirth.
The air smells of mud and pine needles, of buried rivers burrowing to the surface only to gulleywash down to the storm sewers. The city yields up its odors to the flood. I am another bit of flotsam tumbling in the stream.
At last, my shoes squelch me indoors, where I shake like a dog in the garage and strip on the way to my office. Then I sit down and write the water, every letter a little beat in the still marching parade.
Jessie Powell is the Jester Queen. She likes to tell you about her dog, her kids, her fiction, and her blog, but not necessarily in that order.