Storms came through last week bringing the spring precipitative trifecta of rain, hail, and snow; and then wind, lots of blustery wind. With every spring, I am reminded of how much I love the spring storm-skies: skies with clouds of different kinds stacked one layer upon another, fluffy white clouds above a storm cloud, and the sun breaking over it all. I love how you can be standing in sunshine under a patch of blue sky, surrounded by these clouds, and see approaching the darkness of rain, cloud descending all the way to earth in shafts of blue-gray darkness.
April is National Poetry Month, and because a friend reminded me just today, in fact, of the beauty of Gerard Manley Hopkins, I thought I would celebrate the spring storms and National Poetry Month by sharing this photo of a spring storm elsewhere (just a cell phone photo, but my amateurish attempts to capture the storm skies are futile and I frankly gave up this year), and a Hopkins poem about spring. Another time I’ll have to share more about Hopkins; a modern poet before there were modern poets.
by Gerard Manley Hopkins
The world is charged with the grandeur of God.
It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;
It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil
Crushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod?
Generations have trod, have trod, have trod;
And all is seared with trade; bleared, smeared with toil;
And wears man’s smudge and shares man’s smell: the soil
Is bare now, nor can foot feel, being shod.
And for all this, nature is never spent;
There lives the dearest freshness deep down things;
And though the last lights off the black West went
Oh, morning, at the brown brink eastward, springs —
Because the Holy Ghost over the bent
World broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings.