• Kathleen Cassen Mickelson

EAT, WRITE, DIGEST: Dampened

Wet, wet, wet. Three inches of water in the rain gauge not once, not twice, but more. Water rushes at Minnehaha Creek, washes through farm fields, shuts down the interstate highway. The hard-working farmers could lose their crops. The foolish could lose their lives.

And in other parts of the world, children die for lack of water. Rivers are diverted to make arid land spit out crops that would not grow there on their own.

I think of that as I feel a clump of too-wet garden dirt in my fingers, as I fight with the way my hair kinks in the humidity. Too much rain. Too little rain. Both are bad for humans in some way. I think of the huge crop of mosquitoes all this rain will unleash, hate the size of the welts I get from mosquito bites. I wonder about West Nile virus, how many cases will be documented in people and horses, how many dead birds I will find in our yard.

And yet the sound of the rain on the roof during the dark night still lulls me to sleep, still sets up its steady wet rhythm. Pat-a-pat-a-pat. Each flash of lightning from slow-moving storms pulls me to the window, each rumble of thunder and rush of wind fascinates me.

I will try to be grateful for this house that does not leak, this skin that is not cracked for lack of moisture, for the lettuce that is thriving in the container garden on my deck. I will not chant, “rain, rain, go away,” because if it really did, it would be so much worse.

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