July 28, 2010...11:02 pm

Because we need a poem about summer rain.

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It’s not raining here. But perhaps one of you somewhere is reading this in a warm town while rain falls romantically on your tin roof. And the air is warm enough that you could walk outside for a little splash in your flip flops. Perhaps I’m nostalgic because this is my first “summer” in San Francisco where it’s constantly in the 60s and I keep forgetting it’s July.  But I just needed to read this poem today and be reminded of that metallic feeling of rain coming on a 90 degree day. So, wherever you are, rain-appreciator, this one’s for you. (P.S.  Sorry the poem’s a little sad.)

Heavy Summer Rain

by Jane Kenyon

The grasses in the field have toppled,
and in places it seems that a large, now
absent, animal must have passed the night.
The hay will right itself if the day

turns dry. I miss you steadily, painfully.
None of your blustering entrances
or exits, doors swinging wildly
on their hinges, or your huge unconscious
sighs when you read something sad,
like Henry Adam’s letters from Japan,
where he traveled after Clover died.

Everything blooming bows down in the rain:
white irises, red peonies; and the poppies
with their black and secret centers
lie shattered on the lawn.


  • Beautiful words…Here in well heated Alabama, summer rain is sweet respite and sometimes even lowers the humidity a bit. I, too have known the unsummery summer of San Francisco and its surroundings. Summer there, with its gathering of far-flung friends, warmed my heart, but left the rest of me, downright cold.

    This night, I will bathe my toes in the warmth that flows from the pavement of my drive. I will search the horizon and see the shimmer of what appears rain, but is only the heat’s escape, and all day long I will sweat off a shower in your honor as well.

  • Oh I sense you miss the rain like I do. It’s odd having temps constantly in the 70′s with little to no hope of a drop of rain. (Here in SoCal)

    On our trip to Colorado recently it was raining there and we found ourselves celebrating every little drop.

    I guess you don’t know how tied you are to things like rain or pine trees until they are gone :)

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