#reverb14: april showers

April Showers Bring May Flowers 

I have a confession: I don't mind the rain. I don't even mind thunderstorms if I don't have to go out in them and the power stays on. I can be perfectly happy with temperatures in the 50's or 60's, a little bit of rain, just enough for an umbrella. I love the smell of it, the way it can feel almost cold but just enough to complain about. 

In my Alabama childhood, the rain lulled me to sleep, woke me up on particularly stormy nights, and excited my imagination when lightning lit up the sky. I would watch the rain fall in big fat drops, splashing on the back patio, or if I was at my Grandmother's, all the windows would be open and the smell of hydrangeas, honeysuckle and rain would overwhelm me. Rain in Alabama promises a cool it never delivers, instead the air feels heavy, sticky, like a sauna you've stayed in too long. And still, I am enamored with it. 

I remember summers as a camp counselor, the race from dinner to the cabin, slipping in mud as rain pelted my back, laughing with my friends as we entered the main room and stripped off our clothes, freezing in the suddenly air conditioned room, or watching the clouds roll in across the lake, the collective groans of the campers when thunder boomed in the sky, which meant swim time was over. And it rained, or threatened too, at least once an afternoon. We would huddle under the craft area, a glorified lean-to carport with picnic tables and make lanyards and shrinky dinks, rain hitting then sluicing off the metal roof in grooves. Sometimes we'd be banished to the rec area, a stuffy gym where I could run a 4 square game with the best of them. For some reason, there was a record player and a few old 45s that the kids would argue over. Eventually, I brought out my brand new portable CD stereo boombox which still bears the scar (shattered plastic display) of a volleyball hitting it, and we argued over CD's. 

Still, I like the rain.

I wouldn't want to live in a place where it rained all the time. I don't want it to rain for weeks, or be constantly gloomy but after the cold and snow we've had this year, I can handle some rainy days; in fact, I can write poems and read books and not grade essays piling up in Google Drive. And I can enjoy them, at least for now.