Rain In Summer


Rain In Summer
Koitsu Tsuchiya, Rain at Kofukuji Temple, 1937
    How beautiful is the rain!
    After the dust and heat,
    In the broad and fiery street,
    In the narrow lane,
    How beautiful is the rain!

    How it clatters along the roofs,
    Like the tramp of hoofs
    How it gushes and struggles out
    From the throat of the overflowing spout!

    Across the window-pane
    It pours and pours;
    And swift and wide,
    With a muddy tide,
    Like a river down the gutter roars
    The rain, the welcome rain!

    The sick man from his chamber looks
    At the twisted brooks;
    He can feel the cool
    Breath of each little pool;
    His fevered brain
    Grows calm again,
    And he breathes a blessing on the rain.

    From the neighboring school
    Come the boys,
    With more than their wonted noise
    And commotion;
    And down the wet streets
    Sail their mimic fleets,
    Till the treacherous pool
    Ingulfs them in its whirling
    And turbulent ocean.

    In the country, on every side,
    Where far and wide,
    Like a leopard's tawny and spotted hide,
    Stretches the plain,
    To the dry grass and the drier grain
    How welcome is the rain!

    In the furrowed land
    The toilsome and patient oxen stand;
    Lifting the yoke encumbered head,
    With their dilated nostrils spread,
    They silently inhale
    The clover-scented gale,
    And the vapors that arise
    From the well-watered and smoking soil.
    For this rest in the furrow after toil
    Their large and lustrous eyes
    Seem to thank the Lord,
    More than man's spoken word.

    Near at hand,
    From under the sheltering trees,
    The farmer sees
    His pastures, and his fields of grain,
    As they bend their tops
    To the numberless beating drops
    Of the incessant rain.
    He counts it as no sin
    That he sees therein
    Only his own thrift and gain.

    These, and far more than these,
    The Poet sees!
    He can behold
    Aquarius old
    Walking the fenceless fields of air;
    And from each ample fold
    Of the clouds about him rolled
    Scattering everywhere
    The showery rain,
    As the farmer scatters his grain.

    He can behold
    Things manifold
    That have not yet been wholly told,--
    Have not been wholly sung nor said.
    For his thought, that never stops,
    Follows the water-drops
    Down to the graves of the dead,
    Down through chasms and gulfs profound,
    To the dreary fountain-head
    Of lakes and rivers under ground;
    And sees them, when the rain is done,
    On the bridge of colors seven
    Climbing up once more to heaven,
    Opposite the setting sun.

    Thus the Seer,
    With vision clear,
    Sees forms appear and disappear,
    In the perpetual round of strange,
    Mysterious change
    From birth to death, from death to birth,
    From earth to heaven, from heaven to earth;
    Till glimpses more sublime
    Of things, unseen before,
    Unto his wondering eyes reveal
    The Universe, as an immeasurable wheel
    Turning forevermore
    In the rapid and rushing river of Time.


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