the instinct to run, to be gone before harm can come again, mixed with ferocious recklessness

Yesterday there was a foxrain, where the rain falls through a sunny cloudless sky, bright and beautiful, the light illuminating every drop, limning the world. Everything was splashed with intense rainbows, the sky crammed with stunning arcs of the purest colours. Uniquely beautiful, it is one of the most precious events I can witness. It felt like the world was attempting to bless us, clean us all of darkness. In Japan they call it the kitsune no yomiire or ‘fox’s wedding’ rain. Mythology has it there that foxes may only marry during sun-showers. More importantly to me, however, it is not only Japan that has that story. Linguists have found references to the same belief all over the world. It is Iranian, Armenian, Finnish, Bulgarian, Indian, Portuguese, Korean, Welsh, Fijian, and Malay. It is found wherever there are foxes.

Here sun-showers only occur only once a year, generally in the late summer or fall. They are rare and naked jewel days, times so full of personal wonder that to witness them alone feels like a crime. Last year when it happened, I was walking up the Drive, having to go home after dropping Andrew off with Karen at the J.J. Bean. The water fell so heavily that I was soaked within minutes, but I didn’t care. I tore off my shoes, took off whatever clothing I could (and still remain decent), and put everything in my bag, all the better to experience this wonder that nature was giving us to be in. I laughed and I danced and I cackled.

This year, my options were less. The joy that lit the sky only served to illuminate the ache in my chest. I wanted so badly to share the glory of the weather with Oliver that I made the mistake of borrowing Robin’s awful phone and calling him. We weren’t together long enough for him to understand how much stories mean to me, how much legend and world mythology I carry inside myself. I was on the bus, hardly able to hear him. Over the phone, too quiet, crackly, threatening to cut off at any minute, I couldn’t explain. When the line went dead, I cried so hard I was blind, and I felt everything within me that had brightened with the sky, simply die. Cut off for lack of oxygen, lack of anything meaningful.

You and yours, and theirs, and theirs, we make a horizon girding the earth. We make a line of communication that spans our entire globe. Through all terrain, we hold down the sky together. Anousheh Ansari just arrived at the International Space Station, and she’s blogging from orbit. That is foxrain to me, that wonder, that inescapable future. We are a line and somewhere, someone is singing.