I saw the thunderhead long before the storm:
Current transformed cumulus into dark masses;
Gales grew stronger, the avant guard
For the violence, the floods, the passionate rage to come.
Abundant anger thunders vehemently in my ears;
Fierce wind tosses me in reckless abandon;
Pounding rains sting heedless of my armor;
Flash floods drown me in overwhelming emotion.
Trained as a vicious beast, I fight
This bloody torrent, pungent
With indiscriminate minglings of savage scents,
Pledging lewd carnality.
Such has been the touch of past loves;
Seeking excitement, I sought storms,
Knowing passion only as enduring pain,
Risking life to feel.
Consumed by hunger, I was not nourished;
Harassed by thirst, I was not quenched;
Obsessed by death, I could not die,
But, undefeated, I could dream.
The mist, first a fanciful vision as the beast dreamed,
Formed timidly during drought between storms,
A tingling newness, embodied hesitantly.
Undefended, I walk into the mist,
Habitually shrinking and agitated
As pervading softness surrounds.
Unguarded, I run into the mist,
Fearfully venturing the unknown
As delightful ease encircles.
Unaccustomed, I laugh in the mist,
Trembling excitedly in awe
Of a barely tangible rain.
The beast, besieged within, ready to spring,
Spins as a stern breeze blows
Buoyant and fresh.
Burning zeal tempered by sudden change,
The persuaded beast is tamed,
Coveting more subtle bliss.
Stripped, expectant and soothed,
I breath deep, refreshed,
New vitality extolling.
Carol T. L. Phillips, 1989