The storm

Someone scrubbed out the sky. We arrived under endless clear blue and departed beneath muted grey, almost dissolving and discolouring to white. As if the colour was a mistake, erased. Or perhaps drained away: we have used all of our colour today and there is none left for the sky. The details on the horizon remain, the tree line picked out in sharp focus against the grey-white backdrop. It’s like a child’s drawing that started from the earth, penciling in a road, some cars, headlights reflecting and refracting in the rain, making it as far as the midline of the page and trees on the horizon but then leaving the sky blank. Or did the sky simply wash itself out ? All its colour weeping across the earth, falling in torrents of rain ?

We ascribe meaning to meteorology on days like today. We arrive bathed in sunshine, hot and anxious in unfamiliar suits and collars, and you depart under a cloudless sky. We then depart and the storm breaks; the sky is spent, its facade crumbles and it denies us sun and permits us only rain. The storm will last a good and terrible while yet. I think we know this and we dig in, hunker down in its eye and listen to the relentless drum of rain on pavement, the gurgle of over worked drains struggling to clear the deluge, and watch the battering of the leaves on stoic trees. The leaves will submit and fall as summer fades to autumn, as seasons renew, as the world turns.

We submit and fall in the storm as our summer fades to autumn. We will renew but not yet, not so quickly or implacably as the world turns. It can turn awhile without us. We will wait for the storm to blow itself out and for the colour to return to our sky.



This is for my mum, my best and most loyal reader.


4 thoughts on “The storm

  1. Anne and Tim Burch

    Excellent Phil, I was with you after just two lines and in tears as I new this was for your Mum. A really lovely lady who is sadly missed. Tim.

    Sent from my iPad


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