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The Voices Of The Rain

Roderic Quinn 1867 (Surry Hills, New South Wales) – 1949 (Darlinghurst, New South Wales)

LAST night, when under troubled skies
The storm went marching o'er the plain,
An elfin music seemed to rise,
A singing in the rain.
At first it seemed a prattling child
That played alone in young delight,
And then it seemed a joy gone wild
That sang along the night.
The raindrops, with their steady beat
And burden musical and low,
Were like a thousand little feet
That hurried to and fro.
And where the runnels gushed and streamed
And soaked the grass-roots, dry and brown,
A busy band of fairies seemed
To patter up and down.
The air was full of whisperings,
And all the teeming dark was rife
With stir and call that told of things
That woke anew to life.
And then across the darkened waste
A sudden shouting wind was hurled;
It seemed a messenger in haste
With tidings for the world.
But, till across that streaming scene
The wind went rushing down the plain,
I did not guess what they might mean —
Those voices of the rain.
They said: 'Farewell to drought and dearth,
To Famine, hollow-eyed and nude!'
They said: 'We are the teeming Earth,
The gift of plenitude!'
They said, those voices of the rain:
'We are the flesh and blood and breath;
We are the meat, the fruit, the grain
That succour all from death!'
They said: 'Wherever we may pass
The hour of plenty comes to birth;
We spread the banquet of the grass
Around about the Earth!
'We call,' they said, 'and lo, the seed
Within its mother-soil is stirred;
The seasons round 'tis ours to feed
The fruit, the tree, the bird.
'By us the petal is unfurled,
The flower in purple splendour blooms;
We fill the markets of the world,
And feed its hungry looms.'
The moon sent forth one silver ray,
The fairy voices ceased to sing;
Yet far away, and far away,
I heard thanks echoing.
For cattle lowed throughout the night
In deep content across the plain;
And I, too, thanked, with meet delight,
The voices of the rain.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

1:44 min read
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Roderic Quinn

Roderic Joseph Quinn was an Australian poet. more…

All Roderic Quinn poems | Roderic Quinn Books

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