12:08 on a Rainy Night in August

This little poem was written during a thunderstorm in August 2017. It is even more poignant to me now and it seems fitting to use it to round out the month and to mark the new chapter of my life opening up before me.

As a little experiment, I’ve included a recording of me reading the poem. Forgive any issues with sound – it was recorded on my phone so it’s not the highest quality.

12:08 on a Rainy Night in August

I love to sit by my window
and listen to the nighttime rain;
the soft percussion of water
on full summer leaves.
The opaque glass shows
only an apparition of my face,
stark and thoughtful, as I listen
to the nighttime rain.

This is the perfect place to think,
so quiet and without consequence.
My thoughts linger on first kisses,
dredge up ancient, infantile humiliations,
how my heart is but a single raindrop
in a storm. People, long lost
to me, swim in the glass,
perch in the beads of stationary water,
their faces wavering alongside mine.

I think of where I have been,
who I have loved, the scars
in my skin, and the future
of all of these things.
The nighttime rain keeps falling
gentle as my childhood dreams.

I think of tomorrow and the day after
and of my sixtieth birthday and the day
I die. Maybe death, and after,
will be something like this:
sat in the peaceful dark, listening
to nighttime rain.

Elizabeth McIvor

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