Tuesday, February 23, 2010

rain

the rains came that year lashing the earth, scouring her clean like a mom with a washcloth wearing out her children's ears, washing away all that was not secure...

rivers run
fat and swollen
a silent army
carving new borders
pillaging yards
dragging everything
into its gullet

out the window of my dad's rust red truck, my attention is lost in the smooth surface slipping by, brown with mud. little whirlpools spin on its surface, dancing lazily around trees, collecting frothy bubbles. the back of a lawn chair pokes its head up from the current, reaching from its prison, only to be pulled back under.

trees stand
somber and tall
a captured audience
watching patiently
waiting for
the river to
turn on them

color draining from my face, i see her pinched tight against the solid trunk, clinging for life as her oppressor's grip tightens, threatening to take her again. she quivers, losing grip...dad, stop the truck. before it's too late...

arriving back at the house, we towel her off, feeling the coolness of her skin through the terry cloth. scrapes and scratches tattoo her, telling a violent tale, and i know we will be friends.

i am five when i learn that good things can come from storms, just like my first big wheel, found the day the rains stopped. when the rain comes, as it always does, so do her memories.

81 comments:

Mama Wheaton said...

I thought at first you saved a dog which would have been a good ending, but yours was better because I have warm fuzzy memories of my big wheel and me on warm summer days on the boardwalk.

Titanium said...

...like a mom with a washcloth, wearing out her kid's ears...

A stellar monument to parenting and storms, all at once.

Ronda Laveen said...

Wow! A big wheels? What a silver lining.

Matty said...

Even a storm can deliver a pleasant surprise.

Fragrant Liar said...

That was lovely and gripping and so . . .

Wait, you saved a Big Wheel?

Heh, heh. You are one intriguing writer guy. Kudos.

willow said...

Those swollen rivers are dangerous things. Every year, people have to be fished out of the river behind our house. They don't realize it's powerful undertow.

Tom said...

i had something like a big wheel...it had two huge plastic side wheels that you turned with handdles and it would go in straight lines or in circles. Man, I miss that whirlygig thing. Great memory, thanks. And playing in the rain swollen streets was always good fun.

Susan said...

I miss my Big Wheel! Ahhhh...memories. :)

tattytiara said...

The rain punishes us with avoidance up here - that was a very informative description of a very unfamiliar situation for me to read!

Maggie said...

For some strange reason, it is like the rain always reminds us of something or someone. I love the rain.

only a movie said...

Yikes, Brian.

California Girl said...

I thought it was a person. Well written and required re-reading for understanding.

Tracy said...

Woohoo! Lovely poem about rain, Brian. And a big wheel. :-)

Marla said...

Great imagery, Brian. Love it .... as always!

Brian Miller said...

yeah, i am a dork. it was my big wheel. but i loved it until i wore its wheel off...

LadyCat said...

I like the trees as a captive audience...very nice. Love the rain & storms.

Cabo said...

Nice... :)

Gerardine Baugh said...

Floods are very frightening, when that water comes nothing can stop it- These lines:
“trees stand
somber and tall
a captured audience
watching patiently
waiting for
the river to
turn on them”’
Impressive, frightening, full of emotions, wonderful!
Gerardine

Magpie said...

Oh, you can lead us around by the nose and take wherever you want with your words!!

The Retired One said...

Love the line about "like a mom with a washcloth, wearing out her kid's ears".....
perfect~!!!!

Devika said...

Wonderful narration, Brian :)

wishes,
devika

Bernie said...

You are so cool Brian, so many times I think I'm heading one way, then you pull me another....so enjoy your writing.....:-) Hugs

Vodka Logic said...

"Just like your first big wheel" it doesn't sound to me that you saved a big wheel but something else.

Intriguing poem.. I like it.

Shoeless said...

Rain, Mothers, storms, big wheels, all beautiful tied together, it was a true honor to have read this, you shall be added to my blog roll, thanks for sharing and I look forward to reading future and past works over and over again.

Unknown Mami said...

Nice! What a find!!! You scored.

Eternally Distracted said...

I thought I understood it until I read the comments... Now I'm all confuddled again.

Joanna Jenkins said...

I can almost picture the rust red truck-- It's one of my favorite colors--

Have a great week.

jj

Baino said...

Well thanks to your commenters I realised who you saved! What's a 'big wheel' I mean is it just a big wheel or some sort of fancy truck or bike?

Daddy Forever said...

Very nice. You should think about living in Oregon. We have a lot of rain to inspire you.

Lorenzo said...

Treacherously good writing, the way you gently but firmly pull us into the undertow of your memories

Michele said...

You saved a Big Wheel!!
That was brilliant, as always ;)

Shadow said...

i love a good storm. and half the attraction is the fear it evokes...

LadyFi said...

Oh, wonderful writing with a great twist! Love the expressions: like a mom with a washcloth, wearing out her kid's ears...

jingle said...

Wow,
Do u believe that?
My name is exactly saying what u try to say in this story, Ji--which implies the sky after T-storm or snow-storm...It is all clear and maybe there is a rainbow after the storm.

I believe what u experienced and have believed in this story. Good things always come out of bad experiences.

gorgeous writing!

jingle said...

a short tale,
a lasting memory.


thank U for the excellent post and the fun it brings.

jingle said...

http://jingleyanqiu.wordpress.com/2010/02/19/thursday-poets-rally-week-6-purrfect-poet-award/

hope that u accept week 6 perfect poet award tomorrow and nominate one poet again...

congratulations, thank u for supporting the Rally 7 weeks long.
;)
smiles.

Protege said...

It is funny how things around us can bring back the most enchanting memories. Even the rain.
;)
xo
Zuzana

järnebrand said...

Nice. I thought you saved a girl, or your mom... but, a wheel? What is that? I mean, I know what a wheel is and all, but still... There are a couple of question marks flying around here around my head right now. But then again, what else is new, right... ;)
Considering all the snow we have here now, I kind of fear what will happen when it all eventually melts. I think I will have to buy a boat of some kind... :)

Unseen Rajasthan said...

Beautiful words !! This is so nice !!

the walking man said...

Though storms do happen I think that maybe the upside is finding the dreams realized after they are passed on is a good enough reason for them to be.

Valerie said...

That was so realistic, Brian. I liked the idea of trees being a captive audience, which of course they are.

otin said...

How did I miss the fact that it was a big wheel?? I think that I was so riveted thinking that it was a person!

sheila said...

This is about a dog or pet right? Well, I think so. :) I had a big wheel too. I remember flipping it upside down and playing icecream man with it. lol

Lorraine said...

I never quite know what to expect, but i always expect it to be excellent, which it is, everytime!

JStar said...

Great imagery Brian! You do it yet again...

Rob said...

Hey man, did your blogger update? I can't figure out how to do spell check on the new format. If you know the answer shoot me a comment or email. Thanks.

Anya said...

Unique poem about rain !!!
And wheels wheels .....
LOL

ShAKirA CHOONG said...

I thought it was a puppy. lol
So happy you got what you wanted.
I really got to google the big wheel though.

have you a great week, Brian.

hugs
shakira

Jill said...

A Big Wheel! Oh, I remember them well...do they still make them? A CLASSIC!

My oldest wore the wheels off two similar trikes but they were NOT NEAR as cool as a Big Wheel!

Jessie said...

powerful writing here Brian -- but i expect nothing less from you.
your memories are expressed with pure emotion.

warm smiles,

Alix said...

I also was thinking animal, but the rescued Big Wheel was ever so more charming.


Sweet.

Travel & Dive Girl said...

Very nice! I have many fond memories of big wheels and rain storms.

slommler said...

Beautiful Brian. I could see that muddy water swirling and capturing that chair. .....and the gifts that are left after the storm. Wow! So visual...thanks
Hugs
SueAnn

Enchanted Oak said...

I feel like a dope. What's a "big wheel"?
I don't have to know that to enjoy the piece. I've seen a couple of flooding rivers, and this took me back.

Kat_RN said...

It wasn't the big wheel you saved, that was another refrence right? (I don't think I have ever seen a big wheel with a tattoo). Great work as always.
Kat

Daniel said...

Oh, I like this tale. Cool take away and memory from a harrowing and gritty experience.

TechnoBabe said...

For a five year old to be assertive enough to tell dad to stop the truck and to save the Big Wheel is how you got started with your life of saving and caring for others.

William Manson © 2010 said...

ah u must be here in the UK lol we get plenty of rain, the imagery in ur work always fascinates me... keep up the good work mate:)

She Writes said...

How fortunate to be so young when you learned that good things can come from a storm. I was much older, I am afraid, before I knew.

Kitty Moore said...

Beautifully written. x

Meeko Fabulous said...

That was just awesome. Beautifully written. :)

buffalodick said...

When my youngest son was four, he drove his off the top of our picnic table.... I caught him in mid-air!

Nessa said...

Your words meander into blossoms in my mind.

WW - Toil and Trouble

Heidi said...

My big wheel was stolen from me when I was a kid. Of course it was because I left it a couple streets away from my house, and when my parents went back to find it, it was gone. I cried.

Monkey Man said...

Pin up picture and now a big wheel. Floods provide furtile soil for your muse.

Kay said...

oh tricky, you are...I knew it wasn't a person, thought perhaps a dog... reminds me of the saying 'one persons trash, is anothers treasure' and i love how you tied in with every storm something good comes from it...a little food for thought to warm the belly

Dorraine said...

Powerful, Brian. I grew up around creeks and have seen people swept away in them when rains come. They rise so fast.

lady macleod said...

Wow! I keep coming across such amazing talent in the Blogsphere. I find poetry to be the most difficult of all writing forms to conquer. My daughter, much to my amazement, has the talent. I do not - I do stories. It's the Scottish blood...

Mona said...

wow! that is beautiful. Indeed, out of every storm comes some good!

You remind me of Shakespeare's plays, when he chose the run on verse peppered with prose in between to bring out Life as it seemed.

Your prosaic expression says something else. It is like one unbroken view that defies the purpose of putting it into verse. I like that!

Maggie May said...

We get our fair share of rain here and it is OK when it comes down in normal quantities. It is a bit overdone at times. Floods are not good.

Nuts in May

rxBambi said...

the imagery in this is amazing. I could almost feel like I was in the middle of the flood. Superb, as usual. You rock.

VE said...

It just drizzles here...for nine months!

jingle said...

http://jingleyanqiu.wordpress.com/2010/02/24/beautiful-blogger-award-plus-writing-contest-information-update/

an award 4 u,
enjoy and thank u for being Thursday Poets' Rally member.
best efforts,
awesome posts.
;)

AmyLK said...

Son has a Big Green Machine, the Big Brother to the Big Wheel. So much Fun! I wish we were getting rain instead of the 6-12 inches of snow coming this way.......

Mighty M said...

Ah, I had a big wheel! And now I feel like I need to scrub my kids' ears! :)

secret agent woman said...

I thought it was an animal at first, too. I used to love riding a Big Wheel.

Pat said...

I'm glad I'm not the only one who didn't realize it was a Big Wheel that you saved - I thought it was a little girl. You DID personify it as a "she". Great story - you had a lot of people fooled!

Her Majesty Lisa (LadyWanderlust) said...

Oh, boys and their toys with wheels. It starts early. :)

Tamarind~ said...

Whoa! The verses touched all the nuance of rain, and the prose rained hand in hand ith it.. Great stuff! Just loved it!

C said...

I like the rain to be a silent (or not so silent) army. :)

Over here where I live though, we are tropical, and the army isn't so silent, at all... :)

~C

Katherine said...

Oh my Lord Brian...the more I meander through your blog the more you reveal how very talented you are with the written word.
I know envy is not a good thing but I do so envy your creativity with words. My blogger friend you surely l write with a gifted & glorious pen!