I waited all September for a stormy day, so I could use the following text by Nathaniel Hawthorne, because it is dated in September. It never came. Today, October 3, right now, it is a stormy day! I use it now, although it is yet October.
A STORMY DAY
SEPTEMBER 19TH The wind grumbled and made itself miserable all last night, and this morning it is still howling as ill-naturedly as ever, and roaring and rumbling in the chimney. The tide is far out, but from an upper window, I fancied, at intervals, that I could see the plash of the surf-wave on the distant limit of the sand; perhaps, however, it was only a gleam on the sky. Constantly there have been sharp spatters of rain, hissing and rattling against the windows, while a little before or after, or perhaps simultaneously, a rainbow, somewhat watery of texture, paints itself on the western clouds. Grey, sullen vapours hang about the sky, or sometimes cover it with a uniform dullness; at other times, the portions towards the sun gleam towards the sun gleam almost lightsomely; now, there may be an airy glimpse of clear sky in a fissure of the clouds; now, the very brightest of sunshine comes out all of a sudden, and gladdens everything. The breadth of sands has a various aspect, according as there are pools, or moisture enough to glisten; or a drier tract; and where the light gleams along a yellow ridge of bar, it is like sunshine itself. Certainly the temper of the day shifts; but the smiles come far the seldomest, and its frowns and angry tears are most reliable.
Several questions are interesting to explore with tarot-cards. I shall choose one of the following. What does the grumbling wind do to me today, how does it make me feel? What does the grumbling wind have to say to me? What does the rain do to me today, are it ‘angry tears’ or ‘sad tears’? What is the rain saying to me? What does ‘the very brightest’ of sunshine, suddenly appearing in a blue sky through a ‘fissure of clouds’ do to me? What is the message of this bright sunny spell for me? Hawthorne talks about the 'shifting temper of the day': What is my 'temper' of the day?
I choose a question and pick a card in my next entry. Must dash!
From: Nathaniel Hawthorne, Passages from the English Notebooks, Volume 2, 1883.