A Talk with Bill about the Weather
by Steve Lambert

Old age is / a flight of small / cheeping birds / skimming / bare trees / above a snow glaze.
William Carlos Williams

I know this is beside the point,
Bill, and my fault alone,
but it’s hard for me
to imagine a snow glaze.
A good rain can glaze.
I can see that.
Raindrops, Bill,
are as varied as snowflakes.
Gnat-sized drops can swarm down
on the whole of a spring day,
like a slow pestilence,
clouds can explode
black against a summer afternoon,
war with the sun
for a fierce moment,
and be gone just as fast.
We’ve got pissers too, Bill,
and howlers.
Slow, slobbery dollops
and stinging pin pricks.
Bucket dumpers and slanting
walls of the stuff.
Thin curtains
that dance by in seconds
and disappear.
Whirlers that sting
and cold, quiet mizzle,
times when the stuff
hangs in the air
and clings to the trees,
never bothering even
to hit the ground.
Rain can glaze.
Some days it glazes everything,
makes the outside world shimmer.
I don’t have
a rich winter vocabulary, Bill.
But we Floridians
know rain.
We’re like The Eskimos
of rain down here.

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