The Unswung Bat

Thursday, March 31, 2005
A Very Slow Crisis of Faith

A raindrop or two, unheralded and smacking wet tiny starbursts on skin, or on paper - teardrop pops - can be the small precursors of a flood, surging white and breaking. Sometimes. And what about when those overloaded drops begin to land thput! on the heavy ground, drip off of leaves and cedar fans to spatter on the soggy and tangled earth and stay there, not vanishing into the soil, not running off, only soaking more and more.

Will you realize the surface you stand on is only the top of a saturated aquifer, sopping earthy sponge, or not? What about each tree, barken column of water, each solemn blade of grass, rare clover, these tiny succulent leaves, olive-skinned on red stems, a reservoir so deep around you once you begin sounding it. Are you - is one - awash then, suddenly flooded, only by the acknowledgement of what one knows, the reality of a raindrop? Or a tear?

It started raining outside while I wrote this. In the ultramarine light of afterwards, calmly, the rock wall and concrete steps, edged with light, and the flake of sky I could see, looked very different.

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