Monday 16 April 2012

When it Rains

There was a specific picture that I had in mind for today's post.
It was of drops of water, cascading gently down a tender tree branch.
Teardrops of water, clinging to the emerging flower buds, desperately fighting gravity's unquestionable power.
The background would be obscured, but the ominous darkness of storm clouds would be unmistakable.
Perhaps there would be a wink of colour; the sneak peek of a nascent blossom.

Instead, there are photos of the day of rain that did not come to pass.
There were clouds.  Dark and threatening clouds.
There was wind.  The kind of wind that sets you to preparing for a violent storm.
The kind of wind that stirs a fear inside of you.  A lingering instinct from simple, yet dangerous times.
And there was rain.  I heard it on the steel roofs. 
When I looked again, however, it had evaporated back into the clouds.

I consider this to be a drought.
There hasn't been any rain, save for a few short showers.
The melted snow went into the atmosphere and not into the water table.
There will need to be a lot of rainfall to make up for the shortfall.

The forest is a testament to the drought.
The obvious signs are the bone dry leaves and brush.
Treading lightly along the trail kicks dust into the air.
The real story is told by the trees and plants.

The forest appears to be frozen in time.
The warmth and sunlight have set the plants to the ready,
but the real catalyst has been absent.
The forest is dry and motionless.

Perhaps it is fortunate that the season has been put on hold.
The risk of frost won't pass for many weeks.
Fragile new growth could be destroyed even as it emerges.
Nature is a careful balance.

I pray for balance as I pray for rain.
Though we may irrigate our gardens and fruit,
we cannot provide water for all of the forest.
The forest is what provides life to the earth.

There is an image of hope that I know.
It is from a Chinese proverb.

The image is of a farmer, besieged with drought.
His crops are at risk of failing and he despairs.
And although when he looks to the horizon and sees no cloud,
he knows in his heart that he will one day gaze upon the same horizon,
and he will see rain clouds.


  1. its a sad sight indeed.. we were waiting for it to rain here too - such bi.polar weather lately seems a frightening precedent for summer.
    Think there will be any leeks??

    1. The leeks are the first plant through the forest floor. They race to get their sunlight before the forest canopy closes in.
      They are not easily deterred by either frost or dryness, though better conditions would improve their growth rate.
      For people who prefer just the bulb of the plant, conditions have been poor.
      We enjoy the whole plant and so they're ready just the way they are.