Desert rain starts as a feeling,
the air humid, moist, a change coming.
Then a wind blows the clouds in,
arriving fast, no time to run.
Slowly the drops begin,
making a spotted pattern on the rocks.
Then hitting the dry earth so hard,
they rebound and bounce a few times
before they stay on the ground.
It starts with a “drip, drip,”
then roars to full-blown.
Pouring down hard,
buckets and arrows.
Drops become puddles,
puddles turn to rivulets,
and rivulets to streams.
Soon a raging river rides down the rocky wash
rocking, rolling, splashing.
Get out of the wash, get out of the wash!
Torrents slam living things into blockages.
Get high, get high!
No machine can outride the wave.
Lakes appear on concrete flats,
dry lake beds from ancient oceans
made vibrant and alive again.
Birds floating, amphibians swimming.
Tortoises soak in cachements made,
snakes drink drops that trickle down their scales.
Mammals large and small drink their fill,
the humans dance in it.
Monsoonal rain, blessed event,
months upon months we wait.
Every dry cell yearns to be quenched,
parched from desiccation.
Replenish, rehydrate, renew,
fill the earth up with the fluid of life.
Drench the craters that have spread so wide,
reawaken shriveled skin of soil, animal and plant.
Then, abruptly stopping
as quickly as its start.
Gone for days or months, we don’t know.
All we can do is hope.
By Marge B. Klein
“Desert Rain” first appeared in Wildflower Magazine