Nature always springs to the surface and manages to show what she is.
It is vain to stop or try to drive her back.
She breaks through every obstacle, pushes forward,
and makes herself a way.
I awoke on Tuesday morning to the sound of pounding rain. The smile on my face was bigger than any that had come for what seemed a very long time before. It had finally arrived. The rain was here and everything was going to be alright.
With a coffee in hand, I sat and watched the rain come down in buckets, huge overflowing, beautiful buckets full of life and renewal. Our cows were standing just on the outside of the tree line in front of the bush, off in the distance. They were washing away the dust that had settled on them after months with no rain. Those once grey coloured cows were now white. They were dancing in the rain, and then I suddenly felt this need to stand up and dance in my kitchen. The celebration of such an important event certainly deserved a dance or two. A couple of fast moving deer appeared to be in a hurry to possibly escape the rain and raced across the field.
The leaves on the black walnut trees behind the house were no longer cupped waiting to catch any wished for drops of rain. They were now flat open, to share the rain that dripped, then poured to the once crisp brown grasses which lay beneath. The earth must have been smiling too. The heavy rain washed the gravel in the lane down into the barnyard and into the waiting fields on either side.
I danced over to look out the front window of the house. There in a field of not cut hay were turkeys. A huge flock of dancing turkeys who were not worried about the rain that pounded down. The world outside was celebrating the fact that life as they knew it was returning back to normal. There would be no more hunting for water for any of them. The tom turkeys proved to be the best dancers in the bunch. With their shiny black dripping wet wings outstretched and flapping in unison, it was quite the sight.
Suddenly, a drenched red squirrel ran across the porch and then stopped to look in the window. We stared at each other for a moment before it ran up the pillar, towards our attic. Although a bit worried about what he was up to, I smiled at him. There were no worries that could take this incredibly happy and grateful moment away from me.
The rain slowed so I dressed quickly and headed outdoors into the world that had been too uncomfortably hot to explore for so long. The rain welcomed me with its soft cool drops of life on my face as I turned my head to the sky and thanked it for finally coming. There were puddles to cross and drops lingered on leaves. There was wildlife in the fields unaware of a wandering girl. They were too interested in their own celebration.
A constant pounding had me look to the fence line and a fence post covered with dripping wet wild grape leaves. An old repaired bluebird house, right in front of our house, that dripped with rain and was covered in moss, hid a surprise.
I had thought that every creature was out to celebrate and now I certainly believed this to be true. Dancing cows, racing deer, dancing turkeys and “where do you think you are going” red squirrels were incredible sights to see on their own. As if that was not enough to have me dancing again, there, along with an abundance of drenched but happy singing birds sat a very special guest.
Over the years on this farm, I have never seen the elusive Pileated Woodpecker anywhere near our house. For years, I have tracked the sounds of the pounding echoes through the trees in the bush wearing snowshoes or my Pink Cadillac boots, during all seasons. I am pretty sure I have only captured a couple of shots with my camera in all those years.
Well, during the celebration of a rainy day I stood there with my camera in the rain and crept up from behind a tree towards the sound of the hammering. He looked to me and me to him. The pounding continued, and I wondered how this could be. A car raced by splashing puddles and frightened the woodpecker away. Two beautiful Pileated Woodpeckers flew high into the air. Two elusive creatures that I have craved to see for years were also celebrating the coming of the rain.
After a time I made my way back to the house. I was soaking wet and extremely happy. I dressed in warm clothes, started a pot of soup and once again sat in front of my window. The rain had slowed down a bit, but apparently, the celebrations were still going on in the incredible world outside my window.
There, on the post leading to the barnyard, sat those two Pileated Woodpeckers who looked very comfortable watching me watch them.
Could life get any better than that? I think not.