Monday, 27 August 2012

the mirror to your soul

It can cause chaos and destruction but I am fascinated by rain.
I respect it in each and every one of its illustrious guises, especially when it descends in a gentle mist and caresses the earth like the soft down of a newborn baby, or when it is harsh and cold, turning pavements to a stunning silvery grey. Gentle or fierce, it says something about who you are. Rain is a mirror to your soul.

As a child someone took me outside into the rain and told me that, there, above me and around me and below me, was my past. The rain that was enveloping me had hugged my mother and my grandmother and her grandmother before her. In tiny drops it comprised everything I had ever been. It is poetry, it is strength.

When I see rain, when I hear it, and when I feel it tease me, balancing playfully on my eyelashes or trickling under my collar and slipping unsuspectingly down my throat, I know who I am. I am strengthened by a well of familiarity that instead of submerging, releases. It frees.

Rain makes me melancholic, in a malleable way, as if its blanket of sadness can offer some kind of comfort, like a classic poem that brings tears of sorrow to your eyes and a contrasting smile to your lips. When you stare into its looking glass you know exactly where you are going and can understand from where you have come.

Here and then, tomorrow or yesterday, we and it share the same paths, forwards or backwards. Rain is a metaphor, a reminder, just when we need it most, that life is fragile. When the rain stops, in those briefest of precious moments, if we look for it, we can find our time, our tiny chance.

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