There can’t be a better way to enjoy a rainy day than sipping a hot cup of tea with some monsoon poetry on the side.
By Reya Mehrotra
July is the month of the monsoons when nature blooms in all its glory. There can’t be a better way to enjoy a rainy day than sipping a hot cup of tea with some monsoon poetry on the side. We bring to you a selection of poems that you can enjoy as you gaze out of the window watching the rain fall.
American poet Emily Dickinson’s poem Summer Shower was initially published as A Drop Fell On The Apple Tree. After her death, it was retitled as Summer Shower. She is regarded as one of America’s most original poets who experimented with expressions. Her work met with stunning success after her death. The poem is about how rains fill the sea, wash the dust and water the plants. Few lines read, “A drop fell on the apple tree, Another on the roof; A half a dozen kissed the eaves, And made the gables laugh.”
A Line Storm Song
The poem has been written by celebrated American author Robert Frost and was included in his first book A Boy’s Will. A popular line from the poem reads, “Come over the hills and far with me, And be my love in the rain.” He uses metaphors to interpret love in different ways. Frost heavily draws inspiration from nature in all of his work. Among the many picturesque references, the poem talks about the wet woods, the rain-fresh goldenrods (a yellow flower) and fallen wet flowers on the road in the monsoon.
How Beautiful is the Rain
American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote the poem How Beautiful is the Rain. The poem is a song of praise for the rains after a hot summer day. It captures the impact of rain on a city and its people after a very hot and dry day. It talks about the feelings of relief, comfort and playfulness that rains bring along. It reads: “Across the window-pane, It pours and pours; And swift and wide, Like a river down the gutter roars, The rain, the welcome rain!”
Written by Scottish novelist, poet, essayist and travel writer Robert Stevenson, Rain is a very short four-line poem that captures the essence of rain. Stevenson writes, “The rain is raining all around, It falls on field and tree, It rains on the umbrellas here, And on the ships at sea.” He taps into the themes of human experiences and nature, and writes in a simple, straightforward manner, leaving it upto the reader to decide if rain has a positive or negative impact. It could also symbolise the emotional state of the author or the political climate.
The Rainy Day
Written by the most important figure in Bengali literature Rabindranath Tagore, The Rainy Day is a must-read for all poetry lovers in the monsoons. “The sky seems to ride fast upon the madly rushing rain; the water in the river is loud and impatient; women have hastened home early from the Ganges with their filled pitchers,” he writes, drawing upon the imagery of a rainy day when people are rushing back home to save themselves from the downpour. He cautions children to not go out as the weather seems to be turning rough and the danger of a flood looms large.
During Wind and Rain
English novelist and poet Thomas Hardy wrote the poem During Wind and Rain in memory of his wife Emma. He talks about the inevitability of time’s passage and how it wins eventually. He recollects Emma’s childhood and contrasts it with the brevity of time. It is a trip down memory lane for Hardy to relive his days with his late wife. He not only counts the passing years, but also how they are now mentioned on her gravestone.
We Ain’t Got No Money, Honey, But We Got Rain
The poem was written by Charles Bukowski, a German-American short story writer, novelist and poet. He recalls how the rains have changed from the Depression era (referring to the Great Depression) and that it no longer rains the same way. Though there wasn’t any money then, it rained abundantly, he writes. He shares how it rained for days and nights and Los Angeles drains could not accommodate the rainwater.
All Day It Has Rained
Welsh poet Alun Lewis’ poem is about war. He was a part of World War II and in the poem, he describes the yearning for home and family, and the boredom of army life. He writes, “All day it has rained, and we on the edge of the moors have sprawled in our bell-tents, moody and dull as boors, Groundsheets and blankets spread on the muddy ground.” He recalls the days spent at his home in warmth and comfort.