THE BLOG

Hard Copy for a Hard Rain

07/07/2014 01:37 pm ET | Updated Sep 06, 2014
  • Jeremiah Horrigan Author, 'Fortunate Son: A Dying Father, An Angry Son and the War on the Home Front'

EREHWON -- Trillions of tons of water poured from the skies along the East Coast today, nourishing untold numbers of trees and tomato plants, providing relief to millions of grateful frogs and disrupting, if only for a few hours, the spread of a colorful fungus that leaves a rusty splotch of color on very old rocks.

The downpour turned dry stream beds into raging cataracts, startling deer and foxes who had been sleeping in them. Schools of polywogs, long worried that their springtime transition to tadpolehood would be cut short, rejoiced. Water bugs were seen huddling along suddenly muddy embankments, patiently waiting for the streams to settle long enough for the dancing to begin.

Some stream beds complained that the waters had arrived too suddenly, stripping them of millions of tons of loose gravel and sand. The resulting run on their banks would take millennia to repair, they said. Possums and other bankers said the streams' complaints were accurate as far as they went, but, as one ground hog put it, "a raging stream is no stranger to hyperbole, especially after a good hard rain."

Several mountain ranges, whose exposed faces are particularly susceptible to erosion, declined discernible comment. A colony of colorful fungi attached to those faces indicated they'll issue a press release on the controversy sometime within the next several centuries.

Repeated calls to birds and their representatives went unanswered.

The downpour was greeted with cheers by mountain reservoirs that had grown desperate for the only relief they understood. One reservoir, which asked not to be identified because of it had not been authorized to speak, said that several of its fellow reservoirs had been considering joining a 12-step program for the overly anxious "so that they could live their lives in peace, without always worrying about spillage."

The rainfall received high approval ratings among younger flora and fauna, many of whom described the rain as "refreshing" and "a great change of pace."

Several forest fires, however, complained the rainfall's unannounced appearance had forced the cancellation of several long-scheduled firestorms. "It may be hurricane season," said one cigarette butt, "but it's also brush fire season. Someone needs to try a little tinderness."

In other parts of the forest, some elderly trees blamed the rainfall for an outbreak of broken limbs.

Authorities reported that many injured trees and their surviving saplings had received grief counseling from cadres of concerned squirrels, many of whom had seen their homes destroyed in the downpour.

Sources familiar with the daily struggle of life in the forest said that death was an accepted commonplace that plants, animals and geologic formations understood innately. Said one veteran squirrel/counselor "We get it. What's good for a tree frog isn't always good for a tree," noting that while few trees were killed in the downpour, "quite a few" tree frogs had been reported missing and were presumed squashed.

"It's all a question of scale, isn't it?" the squirrel, who identified himself only as "Nutkin," said. "The sheer power of what goes on out here in the field, it makes you realize you sometimes have to just sit back on your haunches and look at the big picture and not get too wrapped in the details of your own little nest."