Dutch farmhouse in the rain
I wrote a post titled "What a Long, Strange, HOT Austin it's been." That was the year the electrical wiring in my apartment finally disintegrated, and it was 100 degrees then, too. Found out today that the AC unit that was put in last April can't be replaced until Friday, which means emergency and/or alternative living conditions. If this isn't global warming--set to break the hottest summer on record--it's on a tall tree on a high hill right next to it. On the other hand, summer of 2007 was unnaturally verdant.
Not a day goes by that I don't completely relate to the fact that the average life span for a woman in Texas as late as the 1940's was only 40 years. I would not survive if I had to do hard labor these last few summers.
Oddly, Havi Brooks at The Fluent Self (who lives in rainy Portland, OR, and even they are having startling heat), threw out a single-cell writing exercise. Which began with Naming The Moon, and progressed to Naming The Rain.
Triggered a frenzy of surfing. Havi helps and attracts incredible creative people, and one comment on rain hit me between the eyes. It was from Barbara J Carter, an artist who creates divine dot paintings. Now, having become as one with the Aboriginal culture as was humanly possible while I was in Australia, I resonated most with the Mythical Dreaming and dot paintings. She must be a Gemini, because she does two styles--brilliant organic landscapes, and soft abstract geometrics. Her work evokes the ancient Aboriginal form on a spiritual level as much as a visual one.
Back to the rain bit, in the middle of gorgeous outpourings (sorry!) of wonderful wetness, Barbara says, (and I hope I don't commit a serious electronic faux pas by copying it here)
Southern California is the State of Perpetual Drought. What is this “rain” that you speak of? Water falling from the sky? How odd.Well. Confluences abound. Me sitting here in the Texas MegaDrought, beseeching La Lluvia to bring us relief. Memories of living in California--my daughter was born in 1976, a historical drought. We had to stop using our well water--fecal count goes way up in a drought. The positive side is that 1976 Northern California wines are exquisite. A drought produces higher concentrated sugar in the grape.
That's the comment that took me to Ms. Carter's Web site and to the magical dot paintings.
Tonight I am going to dream about rain. And gather all my writing about rain and give it name.The Blue Gum Rain in Australia. The Rain of 8,000 Lightning Bolts, Sydney Harbour. The Rain of Fourteen Lashings. Kettle Drumming with Rain Sticks. A Frog-Strangler Rain. And a Texas favorite, It's Raining Harder than a Three-Pizzled Bull on a Flat Rock Rain. The Let's Throw Out a Little Light-Weight Shit and See What The Rain Washes Away. My First Hurricane Rain. Southwestern Double Sun Dog Rain. Rocket-Shaped Hail Rain.
There we go with memories again. I am quite sure I could fill a chapbook with the Names of Rain. Thanks, Havi! I desperately need rain, and your game is the Rain of Redemption and Refreshment.
Go read those posts and see what I commented. Hint: it's about Wittgenstein, language, and meaning. Oh, yeah, about Naming, too.
Polder in the rain near Edam, The Netherlands