Birth of a cloud


The first time I saw a cloud born

it rose up out of a deep narrow valley.

It was Springtime in a hot dry country

that would soon consume the moisture of its small rare forests.

It was a cool evening during Easter week

and I was out walking with someone whose name is now


We stood watching the mist rise up from the stream

from the small trees clinging to the sides of the ravine.

And it broke free of earth, lifting and drifting.

I understood at that moment that this is how clouds are born.

I understood that the cloud could dissipate in the fierce sun

or mass with other clouds and rain somewhere close or far away.

I thought about mighty oceans and storm clouds.

I grasped the idea that the drop falling from a tropical leaf

or shaken from the feather of a bird, was

Water I might drink one day, or use to rinse a cloth,

Water a great plantation might harness to irrigate a crop

Water I would shed in tears, all one water

all Ganges water, all Nile water, all Jordan water, all Amazon water

Bow to the cloud as it is born then.  Bow and do not forget

the birth of clouds.

These clouds remind me of The Simpsons


The Simpsons T V show starts with this sort of flat cloud parting to reveal the hectic life of the Simpsons.  I love the Simpsons for its crazy wit and Everyman philosophy.  I live on Springland street and occasionally I get letters addressed to Springfield street.  Just thinking about them makes me smile; Marge, the good and loving mum who quite often surprises her family with her quirky ambitions, bad-boy Bart, baby Maggie, witness and helpless adjunct to her family’s antics, clever Lisa, wise beyond her years, musician and activist and last of all the catastrophe of a paterfamilias, Homer.  They really are classic with a few priceless supporting characters too.  My favorite is the evil Mr. Burns.  I’m showing my down-home side this week.  I like  Stephen King.  I like the Simpsons and I like Coronation Street.  In fact, I am totally addicted to. Coronation Street.  Wish I had that much skill in plotting . . and for fifty years yet.  I’d better get a move on!

Big night tonight.  Midnight service for Easter a Resurrection with lots of singling and the procession.  This morning we had vigil with lots of Old Testament readings by the kids.  Love that stuff, so full of detail that makes everything come alive.  Love the part about Jonah paying the fare to get on the boat or the captain rushing down to wake him up when the storm is raging.  The best best stories.  Tonight people will be in their best clothes and we will sing properly and it will be hot in church with the candles and then the lovely meal downstairs with too much rich food after fasting for Lent and driving home quietly when it is very late, or rather early enough to hear bird song.  Spring and rebirth at last

My nice young tenants brought me a little box of chocolates and a rather religious card for Easter which surprised me.  I was happy to have prepared them some coloured eggs and included a couple of painted wooden ones.  They are lovely kids and I am happy to have them upstairs.  I wish you a beautiful Resurrection, a beautiful Spring, much joy on this special night.