A Day of Rain in May


Schools are closed today, due to stormy weather.  The rabbit patch is wet and puddles stand all about the territory.  It is mid morning and the lamps are still on, as clouds are thick and heavy with more rain.  I was up early as usual and the sound of the rain on any other day would have begged me not to stir, but last night we were warned of circumstances like tornadoes-so I fixed coffee and watched it rain.

Thankfully, there has been little wind-of course, the roof sprang a leak and we had to retrieve a pot from the pantry, that I would rather be cooking soup in.  I suppose that is the next repair.  “It is always something” rings true at the rabbit patch.  It is hard to complain, though, when the yard is full of flowers.  It is hard to complain, when you live in the dear Farm Life community surrounded by kind neighbors.  It does not seem right to grumble when I see my boxer, Cash and two naughty kittens dozing by the morning table.

Kyle and Christian are home, so I have found another pot and soup is simmering.  I decided on tomato and basil and the effect of the aroma is a perfect companion to a rainy day.  There is so much to do on a rainy week day and because it isn’t common for me to be home-well, I want to do all of it.  I want to write and read. I want to cook and watch an old movie.  It is the perfect day for napping, but it is also the perfect day to cook.  I would like to watch the irises grow, too.  It is a delightful quandary, to be in.

In May, children find kittens-rain or shine.  It has always been so.  I remember my own children finding kittens.  You would have thought they had found gold.  How in the world, they drug kittens from under the barn or from a hollow log,EVERY year was beyond me.  I was always caught up in their excitement initially, but then there was finding homes and God forbid one got sick-and they always did.  The mother cats slipped back to their old life and never looked back.  I would see them sashaying across the yard or napping in the shade.  They ran in any direction, except mine, when I called to them.  So, I was left with kittens, while the children looked for more.  You will never convince a child that finding kittens is not a good thing.  To them, it  is nothing short of a miracle.  Today, some mother will allow her children outside to play in the puddles.  She should know, they are liable to find kittens.  I myself, seem to find kittens ever so often-and not because I have searched the trenches.  A few years ago, just as the bank was closing, I walked into the parking lot and about tripped over a box of kittens!  Some one had “made a deposit” it seemed.  oh, how I begged the tellers for help.  I pleaded and begged, but I ended up with a box of kittens, anyway.  A few years ago, on the first day of school,  I found another box of kittens in the parking lot.  Little children forgot, they didn’t want to go back to school, that year.  They gathered around the box and thought I was surely a fairy, instead of a violin teacher.  Of course, I can stay right at the rabbit patch and find a kitten.  It wasn’t too long ago that the wild kitten, we named  Moon Shine, found us.  He lays now, in perfect bliss by the window fan as I write in the diary.

When I was growing up, May was the month, children were allowed to go barefoot-and not a minute before.  My grandmother laid down the law and Mama agreed.  I thought it must be a sin and was probably in the Bible.  When it was finally May,  southern children celebrated this liberty with great enthusiasm.  Someone always got stung that  first day or the pony would step on their foot.  Once my sister got an awful cut on a metal post.  Going barefoot, was not for the faint of heart.  By July, we only wore shoes to go to town and again every Sunday. I suppose, I am too civilized now, as I rarely go outside barefoot.  I will ruin bedroom shoes, dependably wearing them to the garden  or  to the clothesline.  Otherwise I am in garden shoes.  Still, I remember that in May, I am allowed to go barefoot.  

 Dearest Diary,  I am glad for a rainy day  to watch the irises grow.  I am glad for the chance to write about the world in May, now and long ago.   I am even glad for kittens in small hands presented like the rare treasures, they really are.  . . I am glad for the pot that catches the rain and I am glad for the pot that simmers on the stove, too.


Dear Diary, I am Glad for May

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May is known as “the sweetest month”  and so far, there is no denying that.  This is the longest spring, that I remember in a long while.  Usually, spring comes and for a very few weeks, is so very lovely.  It lasts but a month, and then the heat becomes wicked and makes one wilt to be outside.  Not so this year.  Most days, it seems sinful to be inside as the days are just about ideal.   The birds sing  cheerful verses all day long and I smelled a magnolia blossom today wafting on a gentle wind.  

I have almost finished the kitchen floor at the rabbit patch.  I worked all weekend and every night this week for several hours.  As much as I enjoy working, I will be quite content when this chore is finished.  First off, it is a nightmare, when the kitchen shuts down at the rabbit patch.  I tried to keep a “path” to the sink, then to the refrigerator, then to the stove and so on.  We had to go outside to enter the laundry room, as well.

 Christopher Robin and Moonshine were banished from the house altogether.   These cats dependably track through paint.  In the past I have scolded them for such antics,  which implores them to dash about in all directions.  It is not easy to get teal blue cat prints off of  a kitchen table-or a chair or another floor.  Cash, my boxer, uses better judgement and naps in front of a window fan-at a safe distance.  Tonight, we will have roasted chicken and potatoes, squash and peas, to celebrate a shining kitchen floor.

The windows are up at the rabbit patch. A farmer is plowing a massive field, just across the road. I smell the dirt he is churning and I bet he smells our supper cooking.  I love the smell of the earth.  The soft hum of window fans float through the old house now, like a lullaby.  I am very fond of window fans.  The best sleep, I know of, is either by a wood heater-or a window fan.  Only, when the hateful humidity descends on the south and even the wind is hot,  do we install the window air condition units.  I  always put it off as long as I can.

I named the rose garden, at the rabbit patch, “The Quiet Garden”, after Gladys Tabers’.  Every rose is blooming now and the pink wild rose sprawls about the picket fence  in a full  display of little blossoms.  The Quiet Garden is a charming place, with the exception of winter.  It is a wonderful place to think and wonder-and to unload burdens.  One of the many nice things about roses is that they do not tell your secrets-nor do they scoff-nor do they criticize.  They are like old and dear friends, in that way.  I have a beautiful view of the garden from the window by my “morning table”.  In the evening now, fireflies flash their little lights where the roses abide.  There is no rhyme or reason to their flight, but I pass a few moments watching them in the twilight, lighting up the “Quiet Garden.”

 I did not plan the “Quiet Garden”.   Like every other beautiful thing in my life, it just happened without any foresight on my part. A farmer was cleaning his barn out one Saturday, and come across a few sections of picket fence, that he had no use for.  He offered them to me, and thus the idea of a rose garden was born.  Now, one of the rose bushes gives ample shade-enough to give refuge, for the weary,  in July.

Dear Diary, In the sweetest month of May, I am glad for the smells of the earth, magnolia blossoms and roses.  . .  I am glad  for fireflies in gardens . . and I am glad too, that a generous farmer cleaned his barn out, one Saturday, a long while ago.