Clouds block out the sun. No light will shine on this day until it has been cleaned up. The sun is judgmental. The sun does not wish to illuminate the dregs, the detritus, the damage. The sun feels shame. The sun sends the clouds to shield its own eyes, and to remind those below that the sun it not a given, not an absolute. The sun sends the clouds to bring rain, to cleanse the world.
Rain falls on the houses, on the yards, on the fields, in the streets. It soaks the ground where it can be absorbed and runs quickly off the hard surfaces where it doesn't appear welcome. Even on the hard surfaces the rain find small purchase, small niches in which to hide, in which to assert its presence. It will not be denied.
Rain gathers itself in the gutters of the houses and of the streets. It gathers its individual force into a collective rush of pressure. It sweeps up what it can find and carries it out as far as it can go. Innocuous items, leaves, branches, dirt travel with the rain's collective force to redistribute the resources. They fight for position in the rushing rainwater with the leftovers so offensive to the sun. Used condoms and wrappers, baggies still stained with heroin, crack, meth, drift aimlessly down the impromptu river as if nothing was wrong, as if their life had brought no harm or dismay to anyone. The baggies, especially, belie little evidence that they are a part of a person's personal destruction. They are neutral and vehemently so. The rain cannot change that fact, it can only carry it away.
Other trash falls into the rushing water. Bags, paper and plastic, letters once carrying important news are soaked and illegible. The ink that once represented life changing information, a tantalizing offer of success or pleasure for only $29.95, a sad explanation of failure, declarations of endless love, and of course, the admission of that endless love now gone forever, is all soaked and washed clean from the paper that was once its conveyance. The ink dissolves into the rainwater, the paper pulps itself into a mush, and the ideas they once represented are lost in time.
All the while, the sun directs the clouds to continue blocking its view, dispensing the rain to provide the cleansing. It will restore its power and its energy, but not until this is done. The sun goes from sad to angry and back again. It withholds its immense power at times for lack of belief that it will be put to good use. At other times in a punitive measure so as to remind its children that they are nothing without it, would not exist without it and its brothers. It is the factory in which all things it cares for were made. And, like a parent watching over willful children, feels exasperation when they go astray.
Clouds obscure. Rain washes. Sun waits.
The rain doesn't care. It lives a life of constant change. The sun picks it up from one place, gives it a certain amount of freedom it doesn't feel that often. The sun has a cleansing process of its own that the rain appreciates. It has its own impurities removed from it regularly. It's not a perfect process, of course, but the rain appreciates the effort.
The sun picks up the rain, gathers it together where it is needed, and puts it to work. That it the life of the rain. A comfortable meaningful process of movement, evaporation and coalescence, food and waste. Rain is simple. It is simple in its needs. It can exist on its own, and can even adapt to any space in which it finds itself. It does better when it is with more of its own kind, and even better when it's with others, but still it's a simple thing with simple needs. Clean. Feed. Rest. Repeat.
Rain falls with meaning, with purpose. The day starts with its cleansing. The day will go on with or without it. But today, anyway, will be cleaner than it was last night. And soon enough, the clouds will part and the sun will return.