Walking Home in the Rain
It’s raining again, and dark clouds are
huddling together in the cold air: Old
memories awaken as I near the old house.
I’m walking slower now, as the path seems
to be growing dimmer. Old visions flicker,
then ebb like the ocean’s tide in my aging
mind. The muddy road to my house has
deep carvings in it brought in by the rain-
sculptor. A faint yellow glow shines from
misty windows in the house ahead, and a
shadow moves gracefully to and fro between
rooms. In my mind, the present is mixed up
with the past like an old dream; it is difficult
to recognize the difference as time rusts the
evening into the night. In the corner of the
sky, the languid silver moon peeks out
between small gaps in the clouds, probably
watching my slow movements, and
wondering, as do I. Smoke is rising from the
house’s chimney curling into sky welcoming
me home. As I approach the house old
memories fade, and the presence returns. As
I enter the front door, I find warmth and
I walk in the forest on the valley’s
footpaths of pine and oaks, where
I walk between tombstones and
monuments of the dead where
silence is a wall.
I walk on cracked pavements in
cities where the homeless dwell with
pain and hopelessness.
I walk like a stranger in my own
land, where a raw separation now
exists in the atmosphere.
I walk to the point to where mind
fences bar my way, and find sadness
in my dark thoughts.
I walk into tabernacles, missions,
cathedrals, pagodas, churches,
synagogues, and mosques, searching
for logical answers to bring serenity,
and peace to this weary world of
chaos and division, but have yet to
hear an answer.
James, a retired professor lives with his wife in a replica 1800’s eastern farmhouse in Santa Ynez, California. He has had four collections of poetry, “The Silent Pond,” (2012), “Ancient Rhythms,” (2014), “Light” (2016), and “Solace Between the Lines,” (2019) over 1,315 poems, four novels, and 35 short stories, published. His poems have been nominated multiple times for pushcart and best of web awards. He earned his BS and MA from California State Polytechnic University, and his doctorate from BYU.