The monsoon has moved on. The wind
is stilled. Leaden scarves blown from
evening’s facade unveil a keen indigo
backdrop of lucent stars flickering in
approval. The cool edge of rainstormed
nights has softened to a mellow flush.
I know what this means. Soon swelter
will make its entrance without remorse.
Days will simmer and nights will swoon,
not as lovers impassioned, but indifferent
consorts consummating their roles in
midsummer’s fervor. We will groan with fever
and sleep uneasy until once more, day pares
down and eventide spreads politely obliged.
Our summer heat is finally arriving. They say it will be close to 100 degrees tomorrow. Almost, but not quite a record. The monsoon and cool weather has made for green grass and lush gardens this year without the need for too much extra watering. A summer blessing for this dry, hot state of Colorado. As always, I will welcome the fall.
Did you hear it last night, the midsummer
monsoon swamping the cracked dry earth.
Did you notice your room alight, thunderbolts
flashing a declaration of might ever greater
than ourselves. Night storms darken our
hearts with shadowed worry, fears of what
morning’s illumination will bring. I reach
for your hand in the fury of the storm, holding
fast your to warmth, strength endowed. We
wait patiently for the scent of rain on cracked
dry earth after the clouds move on. It is not
hard rock earth forms to harbor safety but
the fluid that flows from the vein of God
baptizing us with promise. It is the scent
of dust after the storm that purifies the day,
a scent of hope that all will be well.
And it will.
Petrichor (/ˈpɛtrɨkɔər/) is the scent of rain on dry earth, or the scent of dust after rain. The word is constructed from Greek, petros, meaning ‘stone’ + ichor, the fluid that flows in the veins of the gods in Greek mythology. It is defined as “the distinctive scent which accompanies the first rain after a long warm dry spell”.
A very special thank you to my friend, Gary Sedlacek, for bringing this word to my attention this morning. It was just what I needed for my poem, one that had been lingering for a few days on an almost empty page. Thank you, Gary.