the rain and the poetry

I was delayed today, by the rain and the poetry. And because I misread the timetable.

When I got to my class (proper writing class, with homework) we had to write on from the phrase ‘the rain began at midnight’. I remembered reading poems about rain and water. I wished I remembered the Simon Armitage ones. I wrote a drivel type stream of consciousness (poems-soft-what we wear-who we are-on the street where you live-singing in the rain-marshmallow of comfort-soggy-mushrooms-nourishment-defines and confines) while all around me people wrote real things, with themes, ideas and stories. They could read them out; mine was hardly legible.

I had to come back to my discovery of the early morning, Roscommon Rain, by James Harpur.

When the rain stopped the rain began

And clattered beads of runny light against the panes

Decreased and crept inside the ghosts of sheep

And seeped inside the warmth of prostrate cows.

Then pelted bogs to syrupy peat

Made gravelly lanes glitter again

Beneath the melting greys of cloud and cloud

Pierced the puddles with a thousand stings

Tumbled silver through the hedges

And off the skinned shin-bones of trees;

Swept, soft again, like a haze of locusts

Across the ridge, then shifted shape in sudden wind

Drifting, finer than chimney smoke,

Like a passing pang of some great loss

Away from where more rain was coming in

From somewhere else beyond the world’s rim

Erasing gradually the misconception

That the world had ever not been rain

And rain would cease before the end of time.


8 thoughts on “the rain and the poetry

  1. Roscommon Rain starts so very well, and then falters at the end’s abstractions, like a film panning out at its closing scene for no particular reason.

    And you wrote real things like all those other people, and they probably thought they didn’t.

    1. Being late, I’d missed the introductions- turns out some of the folk have been writing for ages and at least one already has a book. I’m so glad I only found that out after!

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