monday morning splat-
ters on a glass window pane
swollen raindrops fall

A predawn haiku when the waves of rain hit the window so hard I woke up and the cars sloshing loudly by on the road outside kept me tossing and turning. Then I stuffed a pillow over my ears and lingered in sleep until 9 am, oh, what a morning.

Some impressive precipitation and the trees sway to the rhythm of the rain sheets. I remember when it used to snow gobs in January. Once in 1996 a blizzard came in that left snow so high it took 9 hours for us to clear the long driveway to the farm house. Then the wind kicked up snowdrifts as high as the outbuilding rooftops. We made tunnels and the horses were confined to a gated-off portion of plowed driveway–the gates to their pastures where hidden by snow. When it finally settled enough that we could take them out riding, my pony’s legs got stuck in snow that scraped his belly; we had to turn back.

But now it rains and there’s a chance we’ll see some flooding, the birds chirp and the air feels to be somewhere around 40 degrees. So much for winter in PA.

Strange to have left the mountains and be voluntarily here in the Northeast hills I’d thought I’d never return to. Strange to wake in the morning and not care that there’s no snow, be excited that it’s 45 degrees and I can run in shorts. Since returning from Nepal I’ve had this subdued gray cloud hovering over my head, around my head really, and I haven’t been able to see much beyond it. Maybe it’s these never ending January days that seem to have stretched into months of their own. It could be the parasite I’ve been sharing my food with since leaving Kathmandu. Or, perhaps, it’s the drop back to reality, the far tumble from the elation and freedom of wandering through a country as pristinely beautiful as Nepal.

Whatever it is, the fog slowly lifts a little higher each day. Though today it stays with the rain, the rain that tumbles so steadily from the sky. Welcome to winter in PA.