At the request of a person browsing in Dulwich Books who had heard this poem read on an Irish radio programme here is Naming the Rain in the Gaeltacht written in summer 2007 and first published in the Irish poetry journal, THE SHOp, no. 28, Autumn 2008.
The rains, different every day, different according to the light and the wind speed across Brandon Bay, were incredibly varied in their effects on lanes and tracks and on our forays into the landscape.
Naming the Rain
In your tongue there are thirteen words for rain,
so tell me one
to match the clumsy rush of wet that whooshes
up the lane, inflating and detaching
hedges’ awnings, upsetting fuchsia’s red umbrellas, hurling slip-slop
scoops of honeysuckle,
cramming mouths of field drains with meadowsweet,
and maybe it’s the same
along the coast road, up-flung salted spray which whitens
shoes, rusts bikes, burnishes and buffs
tarmac to mirrors.
Early summer mornings, there’s a rain that sweeps
the bay, rounds up sea-mist,
herds its water into corries
in the saddle of Mount Brandon.
And can you name this rain that whistles, reedy, low,
a tune that wakes us
to no field, tide-line, roof or peak?
For while we slept it rained away
the world that called us to the window.