Monday, April 23, 2012

When April Rains Begin

Imagine an adage so old
that even a child from the mid-16th century would recognize it.
Here it is:

Sweet April showers
Do spring May flowers

written by the English poet and gentleman farmer Thomas Tusser in his 1557 book
"A Hundred Good Points of Husbandry, April Husbandry."*
Of course, since this is the 21st century, we say it a little differently.
More like this:

April showers bring May flowers.

Either way, the meaning is the same;
and the showers-flowers proverb is the first thing I think of when April rains begin.
So when a soft rain began to fall  in the wee hours of Sunday, 
I said the words to myself.
And again in early morning when the rain came down straight as a pin. 
And still again in the late afternoon
as I walked outdoors and the wind whipped the rain  in spirals around me.
And once more at dusk, when the rain fell in trickles and rivulets,
alternating with  fat pelting drops.
And I heard it whispering in my head again when the rain evaporated into a fine mist, 
leaving nothing but wet grass, puddles, and water-heavy leaves.

I like rain; I always have.
It renders grass and leaves a gorgeous emerald green and 
ebonizes tree trunks and branches.

It clears the dust and pollen, quenches the earth,
and what else?
Springs  May  flowers.

by Gregory Y. Titelman (Random House, New York, 1996), as cited in:


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