National Poetry Day

The theme is water and today the rain has been both heavy and continuous. So I really had to post this poem! It first appeared in the 3rd issue of Drey two years ago.

The Territory of Rain
This is the territory of rain.
It is king here, more than cold or wind,
and all living is by negotiation
with flows and falls of water.

Earth and sky are heavy with it.
Peat grips it like a miser’s fist.
River runs muddy as rain sloughs
the silt from bank and hillside.
It winks between grass stems,
silvers pot-holes in the tarmac,
attacks roofs with soft persistent fingers,
slips like sorrow between slate and timber.

And yet, the heart lifts at the sound
of falling water. It ripples
and sings like a lullaby,
even when the river is at the doorstep,
even when the soaked ground
gasps for breath and roots begin to rot.

It is king here and we serve it
with macs and umbrellas,
catch its least drips in water-butts,
watch it punch small holes in ponds
delighted, even as we wish it elsewhere.

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