Thursday, November 4, 2021

What Are the Chances?


view from the summit of Aldis Hill, St. Albans, VT

What Are the Chances?

Twenty percent chance of rain hung low and purple

over the shoulders of mountains splashed with the last 

of this year’s wash of autumn color.

On Aldis Hill, we took the Main Loop trail

hiking steadily up 

through stands of white-bark birches

and flutter-of-orange maples

in a silence broken only 

by a downy woodpecker’s hollow drumming.

At the summit, we stepped out from under trees

and twenty percent chance of rain had become a mosaic:

puffy white cumulus on a background of bright blue.

Across the valley, shafts of sunlight shone spotlights

on patches of red-orange-yellow trees.

Later, at Hathaway Point, we looked across Lake Champlain

and saw one hundred percent chance of rain headed our way:

one dark cloud with streaks of rain meeting the lake.

We could hear the rain on the lake

then in the trees

before we dashed for the porch at the ranger’s station.

When one hundred percent chance

was reduced to drips, 

a honking V of geese

at least fifty strong

filled the sky


the way


©Mary Lee Hahn, 2021

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