Haiku: Mercurial Mammatus

A strong storm blew in yesterday – the kind that made me wish I’d shut the solid coop door (often open for airflow this time of year, with the chickens safe behind a wire-covered “screen” door). The rain pounded the earth in slanted sheets, and the trees’ limbs flailed in the whipping wind. Thunder rattled the glassware in the china cabinet and I steered clear of the windows, wary of the brilliant flashes of lightning.

Nature seemed angry. Though the true fury of the storm abated prior to our nightly round of securing the poultry and bringing the pigs their dessert of apple and banana slices, the dusk sky suggested that we weren’t completely in the clear yet…that, just maybe, she wasn’t done yet.

The sky was strange – a strange color and an strangely-lit. The clouds were also odd: puffy, but shaped like small scoops of ice cream. Angry ice cream. Under that glowering sky, it seemed like anything could happen – thunder, lightning, rain, or nothing at all. But the threat was definitely there.

In contrast to the sullen southeastern sky, the western sky was painted with kaleidoscopic evening colors – magenta, gold, charcoal, cream – and a smoky seabird swam through the cerulean “waters”.

The sky has tales to tell. I’ve learned to watch – and listen – to discover what it’s saying. I may not always understand it completely, but I’m learning. And looking up at that expanse of sky reminds me that there is so much beyond what’s right in front of me that’s worth learning about, contemplating, and imagining.

I think these “ice cream scoop” clouds are mammatus clouds, formed by sinking air. Learn more about them here. 🤓

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