Center Of A Storm

Commercial door swings open, we meet
Torrent of rain, pouring in gray sheets

Chorus of currents ripple the streets,
Wind kapows concrete in waves, zig zag

Uncountable crystal explosions before us–
My son releases my hand to tear through

The film of falling water and greets
A frenetic dance of elements

Shrieks of glee, clothes heavy wet flapping
Somersaults in the slip of drenched grass

Laughing at his own trips and tumbles
He is enraptured with this big bang

Shower of whirling dervish waterplay–
I stand over here still as concrete,

Sheltered by a square of storefront awning.
In the periphery people scamper to the safety

Of their cars, holding up makeshift head-shields,
Throwing glances at this kid of bliss who is

Drunk on fallen clouds. Quickly now–
Have I instilled in him the proper

Protocol of manufactured earth–
Rules of the suburb, our asphalt existence–

The solemn order we’ve pledged to enforce– look around!
We are not a tribe that dances in rainstorms.

Lessons he may have absorbed today: One (1)
People can be easily swayed to do your bidding

As long as the money is right. Two (2)
Those who swear to protect and serve civilians like you

Carry guns. Three (3)
Those you should respect wear uniforms called suits with ties,

Trust them more than the beggars. Four (4)
Those flags and manuscripts and vows over there have meaning,

Those flags and manuscripts and vows over there do not;
Loyalty is important. However,

Five (5) Etiquette is everything:
Thank You for shopping, Thank You for your payment, Thank You when in doubt—

I lift my hand and touch the water-veil separating my side from his,
Sniffing the enigmatic scent of sky liquefied

When have I ever thanked my
Lungs for breathing me?

My boy– enraptured, howling–peels off his sopping clothes,
Flings them to the curb


Artwork @Eris Gentle All Rights Reserved

Eris Gentle

Eris Gentle is a writer, mother, visual artist, and activist living in a windy valley near Austin, Texas, where nature is her muse and meditation is her medicine. She received her BA in creative writing from Louisiana State University. You can glimpse her life on Instagram or her website

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