A thick fringe of water over-hangs
my gutterless wraparound porch.
Hundreds of miniature waterfalls crash on the cement beneath my bare feet
creating tiny explosions upwards –
Fast, ephemeral fountains that exist and expire in under one second.
I watch quietly, wrapped in a towel.
All of me is spent.
Earlier I battled through a mind of hot metal.
All thoughts burned their fingers when navigating the circuits.
I was utterly uncomfortable.
It was perfectly unmalleable, this formidable mental malaise.
Decisions were as difficult
as swimming in an 18th century royal gown.
No task was simple enough.
My TO DO list shook its finger at me –
I was impeded, frustrated and finally
I forced myself to plant the redbud and flowering dogwood trees I had purchased earlier today.
You can do this, I told myself.
You can at least do this.
Physical labor does not require a sweet temperament or deep thought.
Oh the humidity was stifling.
My face became red, a halo of frizz was cooking about my crown,
my clothing was sodden in the piss of my pores, all of me was smeared with mud.
I felt self-repulsion.
How I stank, this matted animal I was.
Yes! I told myself, Yes!
You ARE an animal.
A toiling, moody she-beast.
Be a servant to your instinct.
Embrace your filth and
your primal need to sculpt your den.
I abandoned the pretense of civility and became wild.
I grunted and gasped unembarrassed – wordless emissions of emotion and exertion.
On my knees, I dug with bare hands
like badger, like a wolf.
My hide and limbs became caked.
little misty kisses from the face of a cool front
changing into the passionate licks of
painting slimy streaks of bronze, brick, and umber across my soiled pelt.
How good it felt, the rain.
I stripped completely to expose my human skin.
I spun and twirled to the ricochet of thunder
booming through the valley,
slinging water droplets like magic fire from my fingertips.
I skipped and splashed because at that moment,
I wanted to.
The growling within me recedes with the grime I’ve shed;
collecting in polluted puddles about my pink toes.
We are all animals and children masquerading as something else.
For now, I have evolved back into a maiden
under the comforting strokes
of the soft fingers of a warm summer rain.