Driving back toward home at the end of one day’s official duties, I saw what looked like two long smooth dark clouds, joined along a horizontal seam. They stretched from low on the western horizon, tilting up just slightly as they stretched nearly to the eastern limit of my vision. Their smooth texture seemed somehow ominous, as if hiding some wretched threat inside them. I pictured their interiors roiling, rising, pitching and bucking, as if in some fit of internal turmoil, hidden by the satin surface. Along the seam, thin wisps of white spilled out, curling outward and downward, as if the clouds could not keep all of their store sealed inside. It seemed as if steam were sifting outward, strangely gentle, soft and mysterious.
An hour later, the heavens opened and it rained as if to raise Noah from the grave. Water poured in sheets, spewing earthward. Rain spilled from the gutters and filled the lower streets, a rush moving along dried leaves and sticks, whatever had gathered in slightly sloping yards and along the curbs. The water moved across our yard, diverted by the edging of the planters and the brick foundation. We stood under the low roof of the north porch, watching the flashing of lightning and feeling the pulse of thunder.
It is good to know the power of the storm, to feel its surging strength from a protected place. Better yet to stand still safe, after the storm has passed. Although we are not protected through every storm; we are always loved.