Amy Lowell

9 February 1874 – 12 May 1925 / Boston, Massachusetts

Flute-Priest Song For Rain

Whistle under the water,
Make the water bubble to the tones of the flute.
I call the bluebirds song into the water:
Wee-kee! Wee-kee-kee!
Dawn is coming,
The morning star shines upon us.
Bluebird singing to the West clouds,
Bring the humming rain.

Water-rattles shake,
Flute whistles,
Star in Heaven shines.
I blow the oriole's song,
The yellow song of the North.
I call rain clouds with my rattles:
Wee-kee-kee, oriole.
Pattering rain.

To the South I blow my whistle,
To the red parrot of the South I call.
Send red lightning,
Under your wings
The forked lightning.
Thunder-rattles whirl
To the sky waters.
Fill the springs.
The water is moving.
Wait -

Whistle to the East
With a magpie voice.
Wee-kee! Wee-kee-kee!
Call the storm-clouds
That they come rushing.
Call the loud rain.

Why does it not come?
Who is bad?
Whose heart is evil?
Who has done wickedness?
I weep,
I rend my garments,
I grieve for the sin which is in this place.
My flute sobs with the voice of all birds in the water.
Even to the six directions I weep and despair.
Come, O winds, from the sides of the sky,
Open your bird-beaks that rain may fall down.
Drench our fields, our houses,
Fill the land
With tumult of rain.
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