Clouds, flat-bottomed as an iron skillet
slapped down on the range-top of this broad sky,
speak bluntly of rain.
The ground cracks, mud-dry
from summer’s grinding hot whisper that yet
sows blankets of saffron dust and disquiet.
Thunder grumbles, snapping out lighting, wry-
necked and surly as an old dog, denied
his usual dark-cool-under-porch billet.
In just such weather I stand, face turned up.
Stupid as a sheep in the rain, eyes and mouth
full of water, ripped down from the fractured
black belly of the storm. Immobile and enraptured
by the grey drops’ wet weight of broken drought,
dead-end of August overflows my hands’ cup.
Bonnie McClellan, Italy