Steady, all-day rain
has a hint
of romance about it.

I remember
riding a train
from NYC Penn Station
out to New Jersey
to see a dear old friend
on such a day…
The world seemed
to slow down,
grow a little softer.

Even after several days
of rain here at the farm
long ago,
I remember…
the day when the flood waters
inched their way closer
to the old barn
(that has since blown down
in a tornado) and we wondered
if, for the first time
in memory, water
would reach the barn.
Even that day,
rain seemed to round
the sharp corners
of the world
as we stood in rubber boots,
in a soft rain,
helpless, yet at ease,
watching water rise.

Now, after years
of chronic, exceptional drought,
here in Oklahoma
rain has fallen in record amounts
and there is chronic flooding.
We aren’t complaining
much. We value water more
now, even
in extremes. Wiser,
we know, drought
will come again. (More than 18 inches
has fallen so far in Oklahoma City
this month; more than 10 inches
at Turtle Rock Farm.)

A few days ago,
strolling through a flea market
on another unseasonably cool,
rainy day,
I met a woman who asked,
a bit hesitantly:
“Do you like the rain?”
Her question seemed odd
for some reason. I smiled,
perhaps a bit quizzically.
Turns out,
she’s taking a sort of informal poll,
to confirm an observation:
“It seems like people who wear sweaters
love the rain.”