Saturday, May 25, 2013

Poems about Rain: Playlist for May 24, 2013


By Edward Thomas 1878–1917

Rain, midnight rain, nothing but the wild rain

On this bleak hut, and solitude, and me

Remembering again that I shall die

And neither hear the rain nor give it thanks

For washing me cleaner than I have been

Since I was born into solitude.

Blessed are the dead that the rain rains upon:

But here I pray that none whom once I loved

Is dying tonight or lying still awake

Solitary, listening to the rain,

Either in pain or thus in sympathy

Helpless among the living and the dead,

Like a cold water among broken reeds,

Myriads of broken reeds all still and stiff,

Like me who have no love which this wild rain

Has not dissolved except the love of death,

If love it be towards what is perfect and

Cannot, the tempest tells me, disappoint.
REFLECTIVE MUSIC: Death and Resurrection by Toru Takemitsu


The Rain

By Robert Creeley 1926–2005   

All night the sound had

come back again,

and again falls

this quiet, persistent rain.


What am I to myself

that must be remembered,

insisted upon

so often? Is it


that never the ease,

even the hardness,

of rain falling

will have for me


something other than this,

something not so insistent—

am I to be locked in this

final uneasiness.


Love, if you love me,

lie next to me.

Be for me, like rain,

the getting out


of the tiredness, the fatuousness, the semi-

lust of intentional indifference.

Be wet

with a decent happiness.
REFLECTIVE MUSIC: Jardins sous la pluie by Claude Debussy

A Prayer for Rain

By Lisel Mueller b. 1924

Let it come down: these thicknesses of air

have long enough walled love away from love;

stillness has hardened until words despair

of their high leaps and kisses shut themselves

back into wishing. Crippled lovers lie

against a weather which holds out on them,

waiting, awaiting some shrill sign, some cry,

some screaming cat that smells a sacrifice

and spells them thunder. Start the mumbling lips,

syllable by monotonous syllable,

that wash away the sullen griefs of love

and drown out knowledge of an ancient war—

o, ill-willed dark, give with the sound of rain,

let love be brought to ignorance again.
REFLECTIVE MUSIC: Prelude for String Orchestra by Gerald Finzi


By Kazim Ali b. 1971


With thick strokes of ink the sky fills with rain.

Pretending to run for cover but secretly praying for more rain. 

Over the echo of the water, I hear a voice saying my name.

No one in the city moves under the quick sightless rain.

The pages of my notebook soak, then curl. I’ve written:

“Yogis opened their mouths for hours to drink the rain.”


The sky is a bowl of dark water, rinsing your face.

The window trembles; liquid glass could shatter into rain.


I am a dark bowl, waiting to be filled.

If I open my mouth now, I could drown in the rain.


I hurry home as though someone is there waiting for me.

The night collapses into your skin. I am the rain
REFLECTIVE MUSIC: Nuages by Django Reinhardt


Rain Song

By Khaled Mattawa b. 1964  

After Al-Sayyah 

             The radio blares “Dialogue of Souls,”

and the woman who hated clouds

                          watches the sky.

             Where is the sea now? she asks.

Where is it from here?

                          What is its name?—

             this rain on a morning ride to school,

winter, my seventh year,

                          my father driving

             through rain, his eyes fixed on a world

of credit and debt. On the

                          radio, devotion to

             the lifter of harm from those who despair,

             knower of secrets with the knowledge of certainty.

Not even the anguish of those

                          years, the heavy

             traffic, cold and wind could have

touched me. I was certain the palm

                          holding me would be

             struck again. Chance allows

for that and for stars to throb

                          in reachable depths.

             Filled with grief bordering happiness,

I didn’t care if I was safe,

                          whether the storm

             was over, only that it came, the slash

of lightning, the groaning sky,

                          and the storms we made,

             how rain stripped everything of urgency,

how to the lifter of harm rise

             those who despair.
REFLECTIVE MUSIC: Dialogue of Souls by Riyad Sunbati





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