Featured Poem: After Rain by Edward Thomas

It’s a little disheartening after the recent spells of sunshine to look out of the window and find the rain splashing against it…not to mention that this week sees St Swithin’s Day arrive once more. We’ll be keeping our eyes peeled on Wednesday and hoping for sunshine to avoid forty days of solid showers – especially as we’ve got more outdoor theatre at Calderstones to look forward to in the coming weeks.

We’ll keep this poem from Edward Thomas aside for when the rain goes away, looking in particular for ‘little black fish’ at the roadsides and ‘uncountable crystals’ hanging from the trees. Most definitely a cheerier way to perceive a downpour.

After Rain

The rain of a night and a day and a night
Stops at the light
Of this pale choked day. The peering sun
Sees what has been done.
The road under the trees has a border new
of purple hue
Inside the border of bright thin grass:
For all that has
Been left by November of leaves is torn
From hazel and thorn
And the greater trees. Throughout the copse
No dead leaf drops
On grey grass, green moss, burnt-orange fern,
At the wind’s return:
The leaflets out of the ash-tree shed
Are thinly spread
In the road, like little black fish, inlaid,
As if they played.
What hangs from the myriad branches down there
So hard and bare
Is twelve yellow apples lovely to see
On one crab-tree.
And on each twig of every tree in the dell
Uncountable
Crystals both dark and bright of the rain
That begins again.

Edward Thomas

Today (13th July) also sees the anniversary of Wordsworth finishing Lines Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey in 1798. It’s one of our favourites, but running at an impressive 1,200 words it’s a tad too long to feature here. You can read it in its entirety here – something to enjoy over a rainy lunch break.

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