Friday, June 5, 2015

The rain's small hands


Let the rains fall in drops heavy enough to look like cataracts of angel tears. Too much water can mean rice fields drowning, clogged canals and rivers awash with plastic debris overflowing, wrathful Nature retrieving what humans and corporations had seized from her.

But sometimes rain is welcome even if it means appointments and errands cancelled or reset for a bright and dry day. While I got rained in yesterday, I found it a good excuse to cocoon in the safety of a welcoming home. When the rainfall petered out, there were these "sparklies" dotting and cramming all sides of the ceiling windows. ("Sparkly" is a word I learned from my granddaughter whose new nickname is "Curly Tops", having graduated from "Butones" to "The Wee One" after a summer's growth spurt.)

When I look at them again, I wonder which came first? The pictures or the sudden remembrance of an e.e. cummings verse: "i do not know what it is about you that closes / and opens; only something in me understands / the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses / nobody, not even the rain,has such small hands." Or did they simultaneously arrive?

The elements, be they in the form of rain, gust of wind or mud cakes that once were shoes, remind me of how utterly small, helpless, flawed, insecure, solitary we are or I am. It's an "I" I am tempted to strike down so the personal pronoun is reduced to a smaller case. The choice left? To be compassionate to oneself, to others to solidify the broken parts of our human selves.

There is Something out there stirring, taking its time like a gathering storm. ("Is it an earthquake or is it a shock?" as Cole Porter would write it.) Is the fault line in this Ring of Fire about to move in our lifetime? Will there be another Great Deluge more serious than getting drenched during an unexpected downpour? What is there for those who will survive?

Challenge for the offering: make the best of what we have, including the eyes that still enable us to see the "sparklies" strewn on windows, on petals from a rare flowering of a succulent in a pot and on the intensified greenness of damp moss. The senses of sight and possible insight may just fortify the capacities for survival, endurance and prevailing against all odds while keeping the beauty of smallness.

Photos by Babeth Lolarga
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