Sunday, December 27, 2015

Rain drop, tea cup

Today my walk in the woods was one of those days when you are never out of your rain gear, even for a minute.  Fully protected from the pouring rain, I become an island of warmth moving through the lonely woods, the sound of raindrops on my hood a constant companion.

Before I left today, I made some hot tea and put it in my little silver thermos.  About two miles in, it sounds really inviting.  I sit on a rotting tree stump and fish around in my old black messenger bag for the thermos.  Pour a cup, take a sip.  The liquid goes down hot, and the steam rises into my hood, fogging my glasses.  I hear the "plunk" sound of a rain drop landing in water.  It is so silent in the woods today, I can hear individual rain drops landing here and there.

That one landed in a puddle somewhere.  But I see no puddle anywhere.  Then it happens again, and I locate the sound.  The rain drops are falling into my tea cup.  As I look into the cup, it happens again. "Plunk" goes the rain drop, and there is a shiny ring of ripples in my little tea cup.  As I watch, the tea settles down, and just for a moment, I can see a reflection of the tall woods in the surface of my tea.  As I try to pick out details, another rain drop plunks into the tea, and the image is shattered.  But just for a moment, and then it is back.

I move the tea cup closer to my body so the bill of my hood shelters it from further rain drop impacts.  There, by my raincoat, I can read the image in my cup; a reverse of the tall, misty trees above my head.

Shortly after, it's time to turn around and head back.  The miles unravel on the muddy path and soon I'm back in the world.  But the image of the tall trees rippling in my tea cup remains with me.

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