Have You Ever Listened To The Rain?

By | July 21, 2016
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Have You Ever Listened To The Rain?

Have you ever really listened to the rain? Have you memorized the sound of it as it pours down on the streets and the roofs and the leaves and the grass? Now it is a sunny day and for all the world it looks like summer, feels like summer, smells like summer, yet it won’t be long before that ridge of trees just over there – beyond the old wooden fence – will blaze with autumn color.

Time is passing and summer will soon give way to autumn. And it is autumn’s summer teasing that takes the mind backwards. The day is so sunny and so bright so much so that the colors of autumn glow in the sunshine. Now go back and remember the sound of the rain. Can you? Can you picture the lowering clouds and the dismal weak light of a rainy day? Imagine it is raining through the sunshine and the colors of autumn are dripping wet with rain. Imagine a day where the seasons transpose and the sun shares the sky with the rain. You still can’t hear the pouring rain in a day that escaped from summer and came to visit us in the fall. You can’t walk in the snow and remember the heat of a hot summer day.

And neither can I.

Imagine a day in the winter when the dour and timid sun barely rises from its bed of stars and comes to see us only for a wisp of time. Before you know it, you are sitting in the dark again, furnace blower blowing hot, heat swirling trying to vanquish the tendrils of winter than come sneaking in through cracks and crevices you can’t see and can’t seal. You can’t get warm no matter how high you turn the thermostat because the cold has buried itself in the marrow of your bones. Your cold fingers reaching for the blanket and then our arms and hands reach for another and you pile them all on in layers of armor in the night. But no matter how many layers of blankets you bury yourself in, they can’t protect you againt the glassy Knight of Winter. His secret sentries have come and they have entered you like thousand tiny icy lovers piercing every inch of you and finding purchased in your aching and tired bones. Winter takes its toll and if you’re not careful, it will break your soul and a thousand warm spring days won’t be enough to wash the bitterness away.

Across the field of too-long, too-green grass stands a long lonely fence of old wood. It is gray and porous; bugs have been eating it away for decades, but it still stands a barrier keeping things in and keeping things out. It still defines where something ends and something else begins and its young shadows still dance on the tall waving grass. I try to hear the sound of the rainy day that I memorized a hundred times, but I cannot hear the pounding rain roaring as it splatters leaves. I can’t really feel the puddles in the street or the cool wetness on my bare feet. I can only faintl remember the sonorous sound of the rain pounding on the roof of my sad house. I can barely remember what the flashes of lightning looked like as they ripped the dark and somber sky apart like a knife. I can’t really remember the sound of the thunder, its low rumbling growl is hard to hear the world of sunlight on a perfect summer day in autumn.

Our time is borrowed like autumn borrows a beautiful summer day; stealing a day from another season. We only vaguely remember the days when we looked at the world through the eyes of a child – full of wonder, full of trust. Days when mud puddles were oceans and when caterpillars were pets. When lightning bugs amused us for hours with their mysterious but beautiful dancing light. When each season was welcomed for its own sake and when the night was as time of sleeping was a time of serenity and peace. Lying in our beds safe in knowing our parents would keep us from harm, we were free to dream the dreams of children – the dreams we never dare to dream when we grow up.

We can no more remember what it felt like to be a child than we can remember the sound and the feel of the rain, when we are in the middle of a beautiful sunny day like this one.

Even though we can never do it, we should always try to remember the sound of the rain.

Have you ever really listened to the rain?

6 thoughts on “Have You Ever Listened To The Rain?

  1. Damie Simons

    I just have to tell you how much I enjoyed reading HAVE YOU EVER LISTENED TO THE RAIN. You touched my heart with your words. It was sad and beautiful at the same time and I will save this and read it over and over. You really write so that it touched my soul. I am 76 years young and look forward to reading more. Thank you for this.

    Reply
  2. Susan

    Your essay reminded me of the days I have listened, really listened to a lighter rain. It was so peaceful.
    Thanks for the reminder and your beautiful essay…best one yet!

    Reply
  3. Patricia Klun

    Yes. I used to love walking in the rain as long as there was no thunder and lightening. That would scare me back indoors. But walking in the rain felt so good on my skin. It add me feel refreshed, too. And, yes, I showered or bathed every day. This was a different refreshing feeling. Wish I could still enjoy a walk in the rain.

    Reply
  4. Ramona

    I’m mature now, but I still remember the days of being a child and a teenager. I loved the rainy days and still do, the freshness in life that only rain can bring. Rain is so refreshing like the honeysuckle and old lilac bushes and the memories of childhood days. When it rains I remember my walks uptown with my sister.. in southern Ohio. We decided to take a walk uptown and window shop, as we left to return home, the weather changed. Clouds were forming and it started to rumble, skies got a little darker and a big cloud decided to cry.. right on our parade.. boo. We could’ve been afraid, but we weren’t. I looked at my sister and we both smiled, off came our shoes and we jumped in all of the puddles the rain had left for us. We were so carefree and full of spirit.
    We are still full of spirit and laughter.
    Thank you for the memories..even though I know you are not Bob Hope (Just couldn’t resist).

    Reply
  5. Trisha

    This was beautiful. Thank you! I love the rain! I miss it as much as seeing the snow fall. Living where “four seasons” do not exist, having your writings really touch my soul!!
    I have saved your other writing, “With A Single Flake of Snow” from Nov. 5, 2015 (I believe). This also reached my heart and soul.
    With what little rain we receive in this southern state, I embrace it!
    Many many fantastic memories of living with four seasons. Walking in the
    rain, swimming in the rain(without lightening, of course) just enjoying life!
    The rain brought freshness. The air was so much cleaner, it seemed to
    anyway. As you stated, ” being safe and knowing our parents were there” (to that affect) Playing in puddles and listening to the rain hitting the roof and watching it pound on the windows. We use to love counting the seconds between thunder and lightening to see how far the storm was away from us.
    As a child the thunder could be scary. Dad and mom would tell us the same
    thing each time, God is bowling again”, “Don’t be afraid”. Awe, memories!
    Then the snow! Watching it glisten on the trees and rooftops while the moon
    contined to shine on it! Building snowmen, gliding down the hills on our
    sleds or ice skating on the lakes and yes snowball fights!
    Even shoveling off the snow to walk out the door. The list goes on and on!
    A simpler time! So innocent! So in love with life itself!
    Thank you again for bringing out “the memories”!
    God Bless.

    Reply

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