Waking in the night,
I listen for the predicted rain, a whopper
of a deluge, maybe an inch of rain,
wicked wind, a true winter storm
before the season officially lands.
But each time I come to consciousness,
shift a cat, wait, I hear no drops
pattering the deck outside my window,
no susurrus rustling the last of the leaves
on the old sycamore whose craggy limbs
could use a good trimming.
This has happened before—
the prediction that does not arrive,
the assurance that comes up empty,
the promised loved that evaporates,
the clouds that decide to float by
and drop their burden elsewhere,
leaving us high and dry.
Or perhaps it’s still coming, we hope—
not the wicked storm, but just
the right amount, in the right form
of what is needed, making space
for what is wanted, to keep us safe
and warm and loved.