April 13th, 2003

caillebotte_man at his window

Thoughts Washed by Rain

Listening to gusty wind and a now persistent rain. The flurries of raindrops hitting my window have reminded me of the sound of swarms of bugs smacking against the windshield of a speeding car. It is an odd incongruity from which my mind flees, changing the sound back to raindrops, but remaining in the car. It has been a long time since I last rode through a rainstorm at night, but the images of the experience come clearly to mind; the way only those raindrops caught in the headlight beams can be seen, yet the sound of those hitting the car create a sense of envelopment; the way that passing through a sudden downpour can mimic the sound of a cracking branch, or the echo of a gunshot, or static on a radio; the way the hypnotic rhythm of the windshield wipers and the steady hum of the wheels on wet pavement can briefly make you think that it has always been raining and always shall be raining, and all your memory of all your life outside this moment suspended in darkness and this illusion of movement was nothing more than a dream. Riding through rain turns speed to serenity, and serenity makes the wildest thoughts both plausible and desirable. Perhaps it is my unconscious desire to be so suspended, outside time, in the enshrouding darkness, washed clean of all other desires by the persistent rain.
caillebotte_man at his window

Storm in Spring

Awakened by thunder which boomed up the ridge and faded into forest and canyon. Then, there was hail clattering against the windows and rustling the young leaves with a sound like someone thumbing through the pages of an old book. All afternoon, the clouds drifted, opening brief windows for the sun. Mere pavements dazzled the eye for a moment, then returned to blurry gray mirrors. Evening brought patches of stars, and the moon opened its own small circle in the thin, trailing clouds -- around it, a wheel of color; between the wheel and the shell-white gibbous moon, a patch of day-blue sky. From somewhere above the woods to the west, I heard a flock of birds making small, high-pitched calls, like the mewings of kittens. The air is now chilled, and scented with damp earth and fresh vegetation. I let a bit of it trickle in through my barely open window. Mmmm. Spring rain.