why it often rain in the movies

– Lawrence Raab

Because so much consequential thinking

happens in the rain. A steady mist

to recall departures, a bitter downpour

for betrayal. As if the first thing

a man wants to do when he learns his wife

is sleeping with his best friend, and has been

for years, the very first thing

is not to make a drink, and drink it,

and make another, but to walk outside

into bad weather. It’s true

that the way we look doesn’t always

reveal our feelings. Which is a problem

for the movies. And why somebody has to smash

a mirror, for example, to show he’s angry

and full of self-hate, whereas actual people

rarely do this. And rarely sit on benches

in the pouring rain to weep. Is he wondering

why he didn’t see it long ago? Is he wondering

if in fact he did, and lied to himself?

And perhaps she also saw the many ways

he’d allowed himself to be deceived. In this city

it will rain all night. So the three of them

return to their houses, and the wife

and her lover go upstairs to bed

while the husband takes a small black pistol

from a drawer, turns it over in his hands,

then puts it back. Thus demonstrating

his inability to respond to passion

with passion. But we don’t want him

to shoot his wife, or his friend, or himself.

And we’ve begun to suspect

that none of this is going to work out,

that we’ll leave the theater feeling

vaguely cheated, just as the movie,

turning away from the husband’s sorrow,

leaves him to be a man who must continue,

day after day, to walk outside into the rain,

outside and back again, since now there can be

nowhere in this world for him to rest.

One Response to “why it often rain in the movies”

  1. what a unique poem. cleverly written to show the man’s anguish in the backdrop of rain shower sans the cliche and the melodrama. ruthlessly gripping images of sorrow.

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