Haze

The first drop lands on the leaf of dying dandelion in the middle of the park. The second lands on the top of an old, creaking car in the junkyard. The third lands on the nose of a young girl. Slowly, rain falls from the murky clouds, descending over the town lazily. Each drop is a bit bigger, falls a bit faster, and lands a little louder.

At first, the rain is unnoticeable: only small ineffective droplets of water that the sky arbitrarily releases. Then, the people notice the hard splattering of water against the pavement, and how the sky looks more and more threatening with each passing second. There is an instantaneous change in everyone’s mood; the pressing need to return home, or to a place that will provide sufficient shelter, arises quickly and overcomes all other priorities. People duck under the canopies of closed cafes, or hurry over into their car, or quickly reach inside their purse – hands scrambling to find that pesky umbrella. Rain, it seems, is a very good at being an incentive to drive anyone to doing anything just a little bit faster.

Soon enough, the streets are quiet and empty, aside from the soft pattering of the rain as it lands. Like a wet rag being twisted, the clouds pour out seemingly endless streams of water, unrelenting and uncaring of the extent of its disturbance. As if nature is compelled to unite its elements in the haze that was the mindless Tuesday afternoon, the breeze that once was present in the early morning sweeps into town again. It’s a little stronger this time, and a lot more fickle. It changes direction from this way to that, causing the droplets to sway with it constantly. Every nook and cranny of the town is drenched, if not at least mildly covered, with water, despite everyone’s best efforts to remain dry.

Water seeps into the dusty corners of forgotten alleyways; into the dry soil in small flowerpots; onto the tabletops and chairs in the public park. It enters into people’s homes by clinging to the bottom of their shoes; it floods into the pipes below the roads, and it sinks into the roots of the large oak trees that frame the town hall. The repetitive pitter-patter of the rain against the glass of the window resounded throughout every shop, every restaurant, every house – if the sounds were combined in a single room, it most certainly would’ve been deafening.

Quietly, in the corner of his room, snuggled beneath layers of blankets, a little boy sits, leaning his head against the window. He stares out upon the scene before him: the endless cascade of rain that stops on the slanted roofs of houses next to him and the floors stories below him. His eyes are wistful, as if he’s asking the rain for something, before they flutter shut.

Quietly, in the corner of his room, snuggled beneath layers of blankets, a little boy sits, hoping the rain soothes rather than soils. And, unknowingly, it does just that.

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