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THE RAIN (poem) - Anthony Lawrence - Australia - Poetry International
 
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The Rain
Rain, and driving thoughts of rain, miles
and hours of it, inches and yards of light
and dark rain, where seamless cloud has been
stitched and gathered into a great undoing
of itself, in wind that brings its freeplaying ride
through a highland plateau down into the hair-
pinned, run-off green below Mount Arrowsmith
or Frenchman’s Cap, whose faces have gone
to a full-blown curtain of angled rain
and its bright companions, ice and snow,
to make, under the button grass, a blackwater
seepage from a thaw that will come within days,
or less, here and there at rain-mined overhangs
flowering with spillage, and in Queenstown,
where a conveyor belt sounds like a mongrel
dragging its chain against the rim of an over-
turned drum, it is raining still, at the tail end
of a mining era, on the open-cut towns of Linda
and Gormanston, diminishing under seasons
of rain-blurred windows and the shells of cars
in yards overgrown with absence, on lakes
where the rings of rising trout are one
with the surface-pelting blanket of the rain,
clear and clean as the spittle of a local
weather-telling prophet who grinds lens glass
and peers at the sky from a roof, rain-hammered
and domed above streets awash with longing,
and further afield, near a moored houseboat
on Macquarie Harbour, an old woodcutter
is remembering rain as an all-night, fly-sheet-
testing wall of black proportions, and day
as much the same, with sunlight no more
than a rumour, with running silver on the chip-
flecked sleeves of his oilskin, and now, inland,
with no change to the long-range forecast,
at Cemetery Creek and Laughing Jack Lagoon,
it is raining, and the rivers are full, their dark
mirrors bubbling, and even the mountain-fed
torrent between two hydro-electric plants
– its peaks and lines like whitewashed milestones
tumbling end over end – is driving the blood-
made turbines with its own internal rain.