Unexpected refreshments

7. Rain
THE RAIN is raining all around,
It falls on field and tree,
It rains on the umbrellas here,
And on the ships at sea.

—Stevenson, Robert Louis (1850–1894).  A Child’s Garden of Verses.  1913.

So I memorized something in my childhood, my protests to the contrary. The Seventies were truly a low point in the annals of memorization, and I would have been a poor subject regardless,
but my mother’s love for A Child’s Garden of Verses and Stevenson’s gentle lyrics evidently settled far enough into my brain that I look out the French doors to our dripping arbor and think: “The rain is raining all around…”

It really is. Rumor has it that over the last few days nearly eight inches has fallen in some neighborhoods. B has changed her grumbles over to the inanity of her co-workers’ conversation and her inability to prepare enough reading material to sustain her through swimmerless days working at the pool. Uprooting the tall, deep-rooted ruellia from their self-sown homes is simple rather than a stem-snapping tussle with the usual baked earth of August. All the lights in the house are on, even the ones behind the computer monitor.

I send prayers for my friends in lower Louisiana. They’re not thinking of Stevenson’s rain right now. I wouldn’t be either; theirs has been grim, relentless rain.

But our rain is an easier rain, an unexpected blessing of a rain. The vines on the arbor are adding orange trumpet-blossoms in celebration as I write this.

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