Jul 4, 2011

On Summer Rain

Photo by: FFrame

It's not the kind of rain that falls hard. 

Instead, it drums calmly on rooftops and parked cars. It comes at night, always at night, to pool quietly on subway steps. To swell slowly in flowerboxes, old cardboard, doormats and toy trucks left forgotten on the balcony. 

It's not the kind of rain that cuts humidity. 

Instead, it soaks a mouldy wetness into the city. It hangs around in hot wet sidewalks and brown puddles. I picture it as eggs poured over a bowl of flour by a baker's hands. The flour fans up, hangs in the air, and settles down finely again. By morning, the heat settles down finely again. 

The students carry hand fans shaped like Batman masks, fans with pop star pictures, fans shaped like fat pink strawberries. In my classroom, they scavenge the cupboards and drawers for spare paper to shape into cups and fill with water. They slouch even more these days.

My face, constantly, is the boiled-shrimp pink of overexertion. Five times a day, people ask about my health. Here, I sweat between my fingers. The small of my back, the arches of my feet. The pages of my books are all wrinkled from touch.

At night, the barest breeze goes down the long corridor of my street. People come out slowly, always moving slowly these days. Kitchen doors hang open, and cooks in rubber aprons squat on their stoops, peeling sweet potatoes and snapping green onion stalks in two. 

On balconies, you can spot the bobbing silhouette of a working housewife. You can hear the slap and drip of laundry washed by hand, the splash of thankful arms in cool water. 


  1. Second post I've read on rain today! I guess all of these storms around the world are making us look at rain in a different way...