Imago lacus

The picture above was taken by a dear friend, the American poet Debra Kang Dean (please do not use it without permission). I met Debra three years before, when I went to Walden to work with his late husband Brad, a great Thoreau scholar. Once we spent hours tracking this quotation: "Some men go fishing all their lives without ever realizing it's not fish they are after." We concluded that Thoreau never wrote it, but si non è vero...

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Rainy day (Feb. 15, 1855) in Concord

All day a steady, warm, imprisoning rain carrying off the snow, not unmusical on my roof.  It is a rare time for the student and reader who cannot go abroad in the afternoon, provided he can keep awake, for we are wont to be drowsy as cats in such weather.  Without, it is not walking but wading.  It is so long since I have heard it that the steady, soaking, rushing sound of the rain on the shingles is musical.  The fire needs no replenishing, and we save our fuel.  It seems like a distant forerunner of spring.  It is because I am allied to the elements that the sound of the rain is thus soothing to me.  The sound soaks into my spirit, as the water into the earth, reminding me of the season when snow and ice will be no more, when the earth will be thawed and drink up the rain as fast as it falls.  



  1. and the clouds rain tears
    HDT: Walden

  2. Thanks! Good one, from the chapter on Solitude: "The indescribable innocence and beneficence of Nature, - of sun and wind and rain, of summer and winter, - such health, such cheer, they afford forever! and such sympathy have they ever with our race, that all Nature would be affected, and the sun's brightness fade, and the winds would sigh humanely, and the clouds rain tears, and the woods shed their leaves and put on mourning in midsummer, if any man should ever for a just cause grieve. Shall I not have intelligence with the earth? Am I not partly leaves and vegetable mould myself?"